Posts Tagged With: traditional

My baked Xmas ham

I can never get sick of ham and really love being able to pull a leg out of the fridge in its bag and then hack huge slices off the side… we’ve gone through quite a few jars of Jam Girls chilli jam these holidays I can tell ya!

It really does pay to hang the expense and invest in a happy pig as not only your conscience will be freer but the meat is super-juicy and has lots of fat (fat = flavour remember!) … but the price can be quite a shock!

This year I did both: I took a mortgage out for half a leg on the bone from Feather & Bone in Marrickville, but I also bought a sad pig from Aldi – and honestly, the F&B was super-amazing, but the Aldi one wasn’t bad either. So if you can afford to buy the premium one, please do – but we all have to be realistic too and when the price difference was about $120 sometimes one can’t have it all…

One thing is for sure though: It is SOOOOO worth baking your ham. For about an hour of your time and a little bit of basting, your lovely pink ham will turn into another level of deliciousness & the most fabulous of creations… go on DO IT!

One last thing: I think that if you have the choice of easy carve or on the bone, get the one on the bone.

Anyway here is my recipe for a freakin’ lip smackin’ deeeelicious baked ham. Sorry it’s now January, but you know what? I might just get in anothery before the end of the holidays…

Baked hammy gorgeousness

For a 5 to 7kg leg ham on the bone

¼ cup orange marmalade or apricot jam
¼ cup Jam Girls chilli jam
½ cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup seeded mustard
1 teaspoon garam masala

1 pack star anise
a tablespoon whole cloves
a calico ham-bag, rinsed

1. Position an oven shelf at the lowest position in the oven and remove all the other shelves. Preheat oven to 160ºC. Place a rack over the largest baking dish you have (it could be the grill tray). Fill the base of the dish/tray with 1 cup water.

2. Remove the rind from ham: using the point of a sharp knife cut a zig zag pattern through the rind around the hock (about 10cm in from the end). Run your thumb around the entire edge of the ham to loosen the rim of the rind from the fat. Then slide your fingers between the fat and the skin, working upward toward the hock, until all the rind is free. Gently pull the rind away. Store the rind in the fridge.

3. Lightly score the fat in a diamond pattern, about 4mm deep, trying not to cut into the meat. Making a pattern with the spices, stud the centre of each diamond with a clove or star anise. Wrap hock with foil.

4. Place marmalade & chilli jam in a medium bowl and beat with a spoon for about a minute. Add the brown sugar, mustard and garam masala and stir to combine. Place ham, fat side up, on prepared rack. Brush half the glaze over the ham. 

Bake 20 minutes, then rotate ham 180º, to ensure even cooking.
Bake for 20 minutes longer.
Remove ham from oven and increase temperature to 200ºC. Brush ham with remaining glaze. Add more water to dish if necessary.
Bake 10 minutes, then rotate ham 180º and continue cooking for a further 10 minutes, or until surface is bubbling and a deep golden brown.

5. Allow ham to rest at least 10 minutes before slicing. Serve warm with more Jam Girls chilli jam & Iggy’s sourdough rolls and then when cold,  serve with with even more Jam Girls chilli jam & Iggy’s sourdough rolls…!

Some handy hammy household tips:

To store ham,  place the rind over top of the cut ham.
Soak the ham-bag in a solution of half white vinegar and half water.
Wring the bag out, then place the ham inside and wrap around. Refrigerate.
Every 2 days rinse out the bag and repeat the vinegar solution. The ham will keep up to 2 weeks – don’t forget to save a little meat for the ham soup!

Waiting for the ham! Spot the classic Aussie icons: VB and sparkling burg on the table…


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Granny’s Christmas Pudding

Now I realise that I’m some weeks (months even) late in posting this – but if I don’t do it now I never will and at least the recipe’ll be up here for next year!

The pudding is traditionally made on Advent Sunday – about 4 weeks before Christmas Day – and hung to dry or cure the flavours a bit… I find in the humid atmos of Sydney success lies in hanging it out in the garden under cover so that it doesn’t get mouldy as inside our house there’s not enough airflow. Granny’s words are that there should always be a few spots of mould on the outside – and after 47 years of making them she should know! And if you’re unduly worried (as you undoubtedly will be…) then douse it in brandy. And never mind the fruitflies!

Granny passed this recipe down to me in 2011, along with 8 threepences & 26 sixpences, and before Granny, my granddad’s mother Mumma made it. Granny thinks the recipe was Mumma’s grandmother’s…! Obv the recipe was in imperial measurements originally but I changed them as they were hurting my head.

You will need:

75cm unbleached calico square
A large stockpot
A wooden spoon
A clean table-top
Old silver coins, threepences & sixpences – not modern coins.

225g sultanas
½ cup dark rum (I used brandy)
450g dried mixed fruit
225g chopped nuts & dates (why these are together I don’t know, I love dates and walnuts so used about equal of each I think last time)
225g seeded raisins
225g butter
4 cups self raising flour
225g brown sugar
1 teaspoon mixed spice
4 eggs
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
½ cup milk

The perfect pudding-hanging contraption!

What to do:

Soak the sultanas overnight in the rum.

The next day boil up the calico while you prepare the pudding.

Boil up the money separately. Do not use modern coins!

Set water-filled stockpot to boil.

Rub the butter into the flour, add the brown sugar and the mixed spice. Mix in fruit.

Beat the 4 eggs well. Mix the bicarb soda into the milk and then add to the eggs.

Stir the egg mixture into the flour and fruit mixture and add the money. Combine well.

Drain the calico and put it wet onto the clean table. Flour well the centre of the cloth and put the mixture on top. Gather and tie up the cloth 2.5cm above pud with string.

Suspend the pudding so it’s not touching the base of pot. Boil for 3 hours (you will need to top up with boiling water from the kettle). Hang for 1 month (see above).

Boil for 2 hours on Xmas Day. Lift out onto a plate and cut off the string. Pull the calico carefully off the top side. Place another plate carefully on top and without squashing, invert the plates and pudding. Set it down again and pull off the remaining calico.

Serve: If you like you can turn off all the lights, dash 1/2 a cup of brandy over the top of the pudding and then carefully light it.

Then serve with vanilla custard, brandy custard, brandy sauce and ice cream or whatever your custom dictates…!

The perfect pud! (with a little crack to see the fruity goodness inside…)

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