Hello again, hope the soup went down well and the guests are crazy for more!
I spent a lot of time thinking about what to suggest for a main, i wanted to try and do something that would appeal to all the dietary requirements of my brothers and sisters (veggies, vegan, wheat intolerance etc) but that dish doesn’t exist, unless you are happy to have cous cous…
So i decided to go for a tried and tested meat option and plead with you to all ask what your non meat/dairy/wheat etc eating friends would actually like to have for their christmas dinner. I don;t know about you but i know plenty of them that will kill the next person that serves a stuffed red pepper or a goats cheese tart without checking or having a bit more of an original thought, I can only imagine its like being served boiled chicken for the rest of your life every time you leave the house.
Anyway, for the rest of us with no morals i thought i would go for the cheaper and more delicious than turkey option of baked ham! This is my favorite version as found on the BBC food webiste.
The beauty of a baked ham is that you can literally smother it in whatever you like, i love a good, sweet glaze on mine but you can do whatever you like. I’m not your mother.
- 5½ -7¼kg ham with the bone in (if there are less, get less, this works just was well with a small gammon joint too, just adjust the quantities)
- 2 onions, quartered
- few cloves
- few black peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 tbsp English mustard
- 2½oz demerara sugar, depending on size of ham
- ½pint chicken stock (to make a gravy)
- Place the ham in a large pan, with the onions, cloves, peppercorns and bay leaf.
- Cover with water, bring to the boil and skim away any impurities.
- Leave the ham to simmer, allowing 20 minutes per 450g(1lb).
- Pre-heat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5.
- Once cooked, remove the ham from the pan and stand for 10-15 minutes before peeling away the skin.
- The fat can be left as it is or scored, creating a diamond pattern.
- Brush the ham with mustard and sprinkle well with the demerara sugar.
- Bake the ham for 30-40 minutes taking care to baste the ham with juices and the caramelised sugar.
- Once golden, remove from the oven and rest for 15-30 minutes before carving, or leave until cold.
- To make gravy, pour the chicken stock into the roasting pan to lift any residue in the pan and simmer until reduced by one-third to one-half and strain.
Serve this bad boy with the traditional Christmas fayre and don’t forget to save some for pea and ham soup and some wicked boxing day sammiches!