Elevate your holiday ham with these simple techniques.
Instead of buying a pre-sliced glazed ham this year, try your hand at scoring and baking your own. Scoring the fat layer that insulates the ham allows your glaze to seep into the cracks as it cooks, adding even more flavor. it also makes a beautiful presentation on your holiday buffet!
Scoring the ham allows the outer layer of fat to get deliciously crispy!
HOW TO SCORE A HAM
• First remove any of the thick outer rind that may still be attached.
• With a very sharp knife, simply start at one side close to the bottom, cutting about 1/3 of an inch into the ham.
• Repeat, cutting parallel lines about 1-inch apart across the whole ham. when finished, turn the ham and repeat in the opposite direction from one side to the other.
• Ham is now ready to glaze.
SIMPLE HAM GLAZE
Some recipes recommend thickening the glaze, but adding a couple of coats—at the beginning and near the end of its cooking time helps seal the ham and thickens the glazed outer layer.
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup orange juice or pineapple juice
2 to 3 tablespoons dijon mustard or grainy mustard
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Whisk all ingredients together.
Brush a light coat of glaze over scored ham before placing in the oven. Add an additional coat of glaze, about 20 to 30 minutes before the ham is done. Repeating if necessary to reach the thickness of glaze you’re looking for. If desired, broil the last few minutes brown ham and make the glaze golden.
Leftover Ham? NO PROBLEM!
Extra ham will always come in handy. It can be diced and stirred into mac and cheese, layered into a grilled cheese sandwich, or tossed into an omelet. These recipes use leftover ham from your Christmas dinner and are a great reason to continue celebrating with brunch or lunch the following day—especially if there are still guests to feed.
BROCCOLI AND HAM CHOWDER
A creamy, hearty, and cheesy way to use your leftover ham—and it’s loaded with lots of broccoli making it a meal in itself! This is the perfect cozy, filling soup to enjoy any time of year.
4 tablespoons butter, divided
1 cup fully cooked ham, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 sweet onion, diced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups chicken broth
1 medium potato, peeled and cubed
2 cups broccoli florets, finely chopped
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, sauté ham in 1 tablespoon butter over medium, heat stirring occasionally until lightly browned. Remove ham and set aside.
Melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter in pot, then add garlic and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 3 to 4 minutes. Whisk in flour and cook mixture until lightly browned, about 1 minute.
Slowly pour in chicken broth, stirring to smooth any lumps as flour cooks and thickens, and scraping browned bits from the bottom. Season soup base with salt and pepper at this point.
Add cubed potato and bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until potato is tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Slightly mash potatoes to desired consistency—we like to leave some chunky. Stir in ham, broccoli and heavy cream.
Cover and simmer until broccoli is tender, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat. Gradually stir in cheese until smooth; check and adjust seasonings to taste. Top with additional cheese for garnish.
HAM AND CHEESE BREAKFAST CASSEROLE
4 cups day-old french bread, cut into . inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound roughly diced ham
6 large eggs
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese
Grease an 8-inch baking dish (or another 1ó-quart to 2-quart baking dish) and spread the cubed bread in the bottom.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and salt. Saute’ until they are lightly caramelized, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in another heavy skillet, heat the other tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat and saute’ ham until it begins to get crisp, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set on a paper towel to drain.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, dry mustard, nutmeg, and thyme. Season with about . teaspoon of salt and generous quantity of pepper, or to taste.
Layer the ham over the bread cubes, then spread the onions on top. Sprinkle grated Gruyere on next, and then pour the egg mixture over the entire thing.
Press down on the top gently, so that all of the bread cubes soak up some of the egg mixture. Refrigerate overnight.
Take the casserole out of the fridge allowing it time to warm slightly before baking. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake, uncovered, for 40 to 50 minutes, or until the edges are bubbling and the top begins to brown. Check for doneness by inserting a knife; if it comes out clean the casserole is ready. Baking time will depend greatly on the depth of the pan you use.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
RUSTIC HAM HASH OVER WAFFLES
With extra ham, potatoes, and other veggies cluttering your fridge, you already have the key ingredients for a basic hash on hand. Throw in some herbs and a poached egg if you want a little more protein and serve it all on top of a crisp buttery waffle.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped pieces of ham
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped up leftover vegetables such as roasted potatoes, Brussels sprouts or carrots
1/2 cup bell pepper chopped into small pieces
1 tablespoon chopped herb of your choice, we used parsley salt and pepper
In a medium to large size frying pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Sauté onions and pepper until soft. Toss in ham and stir until slightly brown. Add left over vegetables (we used roasted sweet potatoes). Decrease temperature to low.
If desired top with an over-easy or gently poached egg. Serve over toasted and buttered waffles. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and garnish with a if desired.