Ham with Pea Sauce

I love the combination of ham and peas. Be very careful when cooking your ham to ensure that the bubbles do not break the surface while it is simmering or the meat will toughen. My late brother and I spent many happy and inebriated hours watching our ham. I only hope someone cooks the ham for my funeral as painstakingly and lovingly as I did for his.

Ingredients

  • 900g1.5kg/2–3lb piece of ham or gammon, with rind removed
  • 600ml/1 pint vegetable stock
  • 300ml/½ pint white wine
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 carrot, cubed
  • 1 parsnip, peeled and cubed
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 150ml/¼ pint sour cream
  • 450g/1 lb fresh peas or small packet frozen peas
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tbsp butter

Method

Simmer the ham in the stock and white wine for 40–60 minutes (allow 20 minutes per pound). Top up with water if the ham is not completely covered. Remove from the stock and keep warm. Cook the vegetables in the stock for about 5 minutes, strain and remove from the pan. Boil the stock fiercely to reduce to about 175ml/6fl oz (about half). Add sour cream and peas and heat through. Purée in a blender, or sieve and season. Reheat the sauce gently, do not let it come to the boil. Sauté the drained root vegetables in a little butter. Slice the meat thinly and serve with vegetables and sauce.

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