Easter 2015: How to make the perfect Easter ham

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By: Danielle Waldron
dwaldron@flavor574.com

Mike/Flickr

Ham is to Easter what turkey is to Thanksgiving — smells fill the kitchen until it’s time to carve slices of meat to enjoy with family and friends. 

If it’s your turn to play host(ess) this year, don’t be intimidated by the spread. Store-bought hams can be dressed up easily with a sweet glaze that will keep your guests asking for seconds. 

Ham is also interchangeable — carve up sweet slices for brunch or serve smoky ham for a more savory dinner. 

Southern Living has a few simple tricks to the perfect Easter ham: 

  1. Score: Make shallow, diamond-shaped cuts into the ham for aesthetics and for a crunchy outside. 
  2. Spice: Stick cloves into the ham for added flavor. 
  3. Glaze: Sweet, spicy or smoky, drizzle the glaze over the ham and let sit for at least 20 minutes. See below for a sweet, springtime glaze recipe from Food Network
  4. Cook as directed, which will depend based on the size and weight of the ham.

Just like cooking a turkey, be careful and measured about the cooking times so as not to undercook or overcook the ham — nobody wants a dried-out slice. 

Honey or brown sugar based glazes are popular, but don’t be afraid to try spicy glazes or chutney to mix things up. 

Peach ginger glazed ham
Recipe from Food Network. Serves 8 to 10 people. 

Ingredients

  • 8 to 10 oz. ham, bone in, smoked and fully-cooked ham (Butt or shank portion) 
  • 1 tsp. coriander seeds 
  • 13 oz. jar peach preserves 
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice 
  • 3 inch piece of ginger, sliced 

Directions:

  1. Let ham sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Trim off any skin. 
  2. Score the ham (see above) without cutting into the meat. Place ham flat side down on a rack in a roasting pan. Pour ¼ inch water into bottom of pan and roast ham until it reaches internal temperature of 130 degrees (about 15 minutes per pound). 
  3. Toast the coriander seeds in a dry skillet for about a minute. Cool and crack on a cutting board. Combine peach preserves, lemon juice, ginger and coriander in a small saucepan and bring to boil over medium-high heat. 
  4. Reduce heat to low and simmer gently for about 15 minutes, or until thick. Strain into small bowl. 
  5. Remove ham from oven and increase oven temperature to 425 degrees. Brush the glaze all over the ham, adding water to the pan as needed. 
  6. Return ham to oven and roast, basting every 10 minutes with remaining glaze until well browned. 

What’s your favorite way to cook ham for Easter? 

 

Visit digital producer Danielle Waldron on Twitter @DanielleWaldron
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