A. D.’s Whole-Ham Favorite

Preparation info

    • Difficulty


Appears in

Cold-Smoking & Salt-Curing Meat, Fish, & Game

Cold-Smoking & Salt-Curing Meat, Fish, & Game

By A D Livingston

Published 2010

  • About

Here’s an old three-step method of cooking a country ham that combines soaking, boiling, and baking. It’s hard to beat, making a beautiful ham as well as a tasty one without too much salt. This recipe can be used for a whole ham or just a butt or shank portion. Before proceeding, make sure you have large enough containers for holding and cooking the meat.


Step 1

  • cured country ham
  • a little baking soda


    Scour the ham with water and a brush dipped into baking soda. Put the ham into a large container such as an ice chest and cover it well with cool water. Let it soak all night, changing the water a time or two.

    The next day, put the soaked ham into a large pot or container and cover it with fresh water. (If you are cooking a whole ham and don’t have a container large enough or deep enough, consider using one of the large patio fish fryers that fit in a rack over a bottle gas cooker with double burners; a tall stockpot can also be used.) Bring the water to a boil, add vinegar, cinnamon, and peppercorns, then quickly reduce the heat and simmer (or poach) the ham for 30 minutes per pound. Add a little more water from time to time if needed. Remove the ham and let it cool in the pan liquid.

    Preheat the oven to 325°F. Skin the ham, leaving the fat on the meat, and score the top surface with a small knife; a 1-inch diamond pattern is ideal. Put the ham into a roaster or onto a suitable baking pan. Combine the mustard, bread crumbs, and brown sugar, then cover the ham with this mixture. Stick a clove in the center of each diamond. Put the ham in the oven and cook for 30 minutes, or until nicely browned. Small hams and portions of hams may take less time to brown; large whole hams may take a little longer.