Recipe. You Won't Want to Miss This!
Not the Same Old Ham....
After a nasty and soggy month, Spring is slowly coming in with Easter, a time of rebirth. So how about new ways to prepare the traditional Easter ham? Out with the pineapple and cloves (it was never a particularly good combination)! Let’s try something different.
In France, hams are usually braised, not baked. This will ensure a moist and tender ham. Assuming you are using a precooked ham, place the ham in a deep roasting pan in which it will fit snugly. Pour about 2 cups of a semi-sweet wine over it. This can be Madeira, Marsala, dry sherry, tawny port or, if you are feeling extravagant, Sauternes.
Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and place in the center of a 350º F. oven, allowing 15 minutes per pound, basting every 20 minutes. Then remove the foil, turn up the heat to 400º F. and allow the ham to glaze for 5-10 minutes.
Remove from the oven, place the ham on a warm platter and let rest for 10 minutes, covered with foil. Pour the juices from the braising pan into a small saucepan, skim as much fat as you can from the surface, add more of the same wine you used in the braise, and boil until reduced by half or thick enough to please you and your guests. Serve this as a sauce.
A Glaze for Baked Ham
If you decide to bake your ham in the traditional manner, try something different as a glaze. Take ½ cup each honey and soy sauce, add 1 teaspoon freshly-grated ginger, ½ teaspoon ground coriander, and lots of freshly ground pepper. No salt, as the ham and soy are salty enough. Mix well in a small saucepan and heat gently until the honey is melted and the ingredients are blended. Brush this over the hot ham—scored in a diamond pattern or not, as you wish— and place under the broiler for 5 minutes, watching carefully so it doesn’t burn, until the glaze is set.