It’s been a while since we’ve been out on New Years Eve, for the past few years we’ve preferred to stay in and cook and watch films. Last year I tried ham cooked in cola so when I saw this one I was really looking forward to it, although my last ham recipe from the book involved a can of ham and was a complete disaster! Anyway this sounds way better, it comes from the recipes around the world chapter and is an American dish.
1 gammon joint
1 bay leaf
2 oz brown sugar
Can peaches in syrup
Half oz cornflour
Soak the ham for 12-24 hours. Simmer it gently in water with the vegetables and herbs, allowing 20 minutes to the lb. let it cool slightly in the liquid. Remove the skin carefully and press the sugar into the fat. Strain the juice from the peaches and add a little of the ham stock and 2 cloves, heat gently in a pan and thicken with the cornflour. Braise the ham in the oven for 30 minutes, basting with the liquid. The peach halves may be placed round the ham 10 minutes before it’s taken out of the oven.
The ham I bought weighed 1.1kg which works out as 2.5lb. So I boiled it for 60 minutes in total. I didn’t do the soaking stage as the butcher told me it wasn’t necessary. I couldn’t face throwing away the liquid the ham had been simmering in, I have frozen it in bags and will use for soup. I think I do really need to have a bit of a freezer assessment. I keep freezing bags of things and have lost track a bit! Think that will be my aim for January to use up all the random frozen bit and pieces I have in the freezer!
When I was buying the ham the butcher had given me another recipe to try; he had suggested putting it in a cooking bag, filling the bag with orange juice and then roasting. I was tempted but I had this recipe in mind when buying the ham.
As I was heating the peach juice I wasn’t sure about the need for cornflour. The juice from can is pretty sticky anyway. The recipe also says you can add some cider to the peach juice if you want, I didn’t this time but something to consider.
I did put some peach slices in the oven along with the ham, quite liked the idea of sticky pieces of roasted peach as an accompaniment. The recipe doesn’t advise the oven temperature, so I had set mine at 180 for the braising part.
I do really love a gammon joint and have to say this was way better than the cola cooked version from last year. It was lovely and moist with really stick edges which are my favourite bits. The slices of peach were a really great accompaniment, I actually wished I’d put more of them in the oven as it was cooking. We just had this with some potatoes and veg, but I am really looking forward to the leftovers. Not sure what I’ll do with the leftovers, may end up eating them cold straight from the fridge later!