We’d like to inspire you to start your own Christmas tradition this year and encourage you to volunteer to do the ham. This is a seriously easy, straightforward, no fuss recipe and the result is absolutely delicious. In fact it’s so delicious you may find yourself doing the ham for many Christmas’ to come.
Choose your Ham Carefully
OK – so other than loving the taste of Christmas ham, I need to be up front & admit that I am no expert in the origins and technical differences between various brands of ham. However, what I can tell you is that the one we get from our local butcher at our local shop is amazing. So go make friends with your local butcher; ask them about their hams, and find out what size will be best for your crew. Then you can order with confidence. Your local butcher will also be able to tell you how long your ham will need in the oven based on its size.
Ingredients for the Ham Glaze
Once you’ve selected your ham, you will need to get a few ingredients for glazing it. These aren’t complicated or hard to find, but together they are going to make your ham taste amazing.
So here’s what you’ll need to buy ahead of Christmas morning:
• Jar of Dijon Mustard (200g)
• Brown Sugar
• Bag of whole cloves from the Spice Section
• Jar of Marmalade (I really like Rose’s Lime Marmalade but anything works – orange, cumquat, or a combination)
When you get home with the ham just make sure you have a baking tray and platter that fits your ham easily.
Plan for Christmas Day
The key thing is to give yourself time – this isn’t something you can rush. So give yourself plenty of time – generally it’s best to start preparing at least 3 hours before you want.
STEP ONE – Prepare your Ham
OK – I’m assuming you’ve never done this before. Don’t feel intimidated. Our aim is to peel off the thick, tough outer layer while leaving as much of the fat layer on the ham as you can. Seriously, this is Christmas Day, so don’t try going fat free!
To do this - use a sharp knife to cut around the hock (the bit where the leg would have been…). Then using your fingers and thumb separate the skin from the ham leaving a layer of fat. The hock should still be covered in the thick skin. Throw the skin that you’ve peeled off away.
Then using your sharp knife again score the fat layer of the ham in diamond shapes. Really important – keep your cuts shallow – if you cut too deeply the fat will peel away as it cooks.
The next thing to do is to push a clove into the centre of each diamond. Its decorative and adds a hint of flavor.
Pop the ham into your baking tray (preferably sitting on a wire rack) and then put some water in the bottom of the tray to keep it moist.
Now’s a good time to get your oven preheating – set it to 150 Degrees C.
STEP TWO - Make the Glaze
Now you are up to the glazing. Mix together in a bowl:
• ½ cup of marmalade
• 200g Dijon Mustard
• 2/3 Cup Brown Sugar
Then smear the glaze over the whole ham. Don’t worry if you have some left over – you’ll use this for basting as it cooks.
STEP THREE - Bake the Ham
Bake your ham at 150 deg C for about 1.5 hours (this is right for about an 8kg ham). I add more glaze about every 40 minutes or so.
Glaze it one final time & then turn your oven up to 180 degrees C for the last 30 minutes or so, but watch the ham closely – you don’t want it to burn after all your hard work.
And there you have it – the start of your very own Christmas tradition a super tasty Christmas ham that’s really easy to prep. Enjoy & Merry Christmas.
Image credit: https://www.lifestyle.com.au/content/donna-hay-christmas-glazed-ham.jpp