For me the best meat at any time of year, but especially so at Christmas, is Gammon. It’s sweet, salty, tender, moist has that umami kind of thing going on that everybody loves and is just awesome!
I’ve covered Turkey recipes and hopefully that will mean that your big bird is delicious and not dry in anyway, but if you want to avoid even the thought of that prospect, then go for Gammon- it’s the best.
This year, I’m being a right old greedy so-and-so, I have 2 Gammons! One I have bought from my friend Jon who rears rare breed pigs, and this is a Gammon joint from a Gloucester Old Spot. It has a really good layer of fat, and is a long joint rather than a fat joint, so will go a long way, or should but both me and my brother are at the same table this year so don’t hold your breath for left overs.
It’s exactly for that reason that we have bought a second joint. This is a bog standard one from the shops, but will mean that we have leftovers for Boxing Day, and will also give me the chance to experiment and do two different recipes. The only thing I now have to do is work out which meat I do which recipe to….
HONEY & MUSTARD GLAZED GAMMON
This is the classic recipe that we do every year and is a real favourite in our house. The flavours compliment the Gammon really well and works great cold as well as hot.
2-4kg Unsmoked boneless Gammon joint
2 Onions, halved
2 Carrots (you would also normally use celery, but that’s not allowed in our house!)
4 Bay Leaves
12 Black Peppercorns
A few Cloves
For the Glaze:
4 tbsp Runny Honey
4 tbsp English Mustard
- Place the gammon joint into a large lidded saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil over a high heat. Drain the water from the saucepan, add fresh cold water, add the onions, carrots, celery, bay leaves and peppercorns and bring to the boil once more. Reduce the heat, cover with a lid and simmer the gammon and vegetables gently for 20 minutes per 500g/1lb 2oz. (If your pan is not quite large enough to cover the joint completely, turn the gammon over halfway through the cooking time.)
- Remove the gammon from the water and set aside to cool for fifteen minutes. (The cooking liquid can be strained and reserved for making soup for another time.)
- Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6 and line a large roasting tin with aluminium foil.
- Use a small knife to remove the rind from the gammon joint, leaving as much of the fat intact as possible. Score the fat in a diamond pattern, and push a clove into the centre of each ‘X’.
- Place the gammon into the foil-lined roasting tray, ensuring that the sides of the foil come half way up the joint to contain any roasting juices.
- For the glaze, mix the honey and mustard together and brush half of it evenly over the gammon, including one side of the joint. Roast in the centre of the oven for ten minutes, then take the joint out and brush the top and remaining side with the rest of the glaze. Return the gammon to the oven for a further 10-15 minutes, rotating the roasting tin so that the opposite side of the gammon faces the back of the oven.
- The gammon is ready when the fat on top is glossy and golden brown. Cover loosely with foil if the top begins to look too brown. Remove the gammon from the oven and set aside to rest for 15 minutes before carving.
- Pour any juices that have collected in the aluminium foil into a small pan, and warm through gently.
- Carve the gammon, serve on a large platter and spoon over the warmed juices .
STICKY SMOKEY GLAZED GAMMON
This is the one I’m really looking forward too! I’ve never tried this recipe, but I just know that it’s going to be delicious. Sweet, sticky, smokey and with a touch of heat, I think this is going to compliment the Gammon perfectly.
2-4kg Unsmoked Gammon Joint
2L of Cola (not Diet)
1 Onion, halved
12 Black Peppercorns
1 Bay Leaf
For the Glaze:
Gran Luchito Smoked Chilli Honey
- Put the gammon in a large pan and cover with cola. Add the carrot, onion, celery, cinnamon stick, peppercorns and bay leaf. Bring to the boil, then turn down to simmer for around 2 1/2 hrs, topping up with boiling water if necessary to keep the gammon fully covered.
- Carefully pour the liquid away, then let the ham cool a little while you heat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Lift the ham into a roasting tin, then cut away the skin leaving behind an even layer of fat. Score the fat all over in a criss-cross pattern.
- Glaze in the Chilli Honey until covered
- Roast until crispy, basting with the glaze regularly to build up a crust.