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How to make the perfect Easter ham, with Mark Hix

sliced Easter ham gammon

Spring has finally sprung and no Easter weekend feast is complete without a succulent ham to gorge away on over the weekend and celebrated chef Mark Hix has provided us with the perfect recipe.

“A home-made baked ham or gammon is a great thing to have around during festive periods to serve as a main course, or as part of a buffet. I also love it for breakfast with a fried duck’s egg and mustard. If you’re using a tender joint I would suggest baking it directly following the method below. If, however, you are using a secondary cut like a shoulder joint of a hock then try boiling it until tender first and then finishing it as below.”

Ingredients (serves 8-10):

  • 1 x 2kg boned and rolled uncooked ham or gammon, with or without the rind
  • 12 cloves
  • 80g brown sugar
  • ½ tbsp coarsely ground black pepper
  • 150 – 200g clear honey

Method:

Preheat the oven to 160C/gas mark 3.

Score the skin or fat of the ham joint with a knife in a criss-cross pattern about 5mm deep, then stud the cloves in randomly. Line a roasting tray with two or three layers of foil and place the ham on top. Scatter over the brown sugar and pepper.

Place the ham in the oven and bake for half an hour. Spoon over a quarter of the honey and continue to cook, basting regularly and adding a further quarter of the honey every half an hour, for a further 2 hours. Turn up the oven up to 200C/gas mark 6 for about 20-30 minutes so the ham is nicely glazed. If the basting juices begin to burn during cooking, just add a little water to the tray.

Remove from the oven and transfer the ham to a fresh dish and continue coating it with any excess cooking juices while it’s cooling. Serve the ham at room temperature or cold.

(Photo: Manuka Honey USA)

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