Calum Franklin’s Christmas ham
- December 2020
- Serves 12
- Hands-on time 30 min, simmering time 2-21⁄2 hours, oven time 30-35 min
Roast ham is always impressive, but it gets a serious upgrade with a special combo of flavours from chef Calum Franklin’s latest book, The Pie Room.
Calum says “When done properly, a glistening, mahogany- coloured roast ham in the middle of a dining table is jaw-dropping, and as it feeds so many, people can come and cut off a slice whenever they feel like it.” Best of all, a roast ham lasts for days and freezes well, so it’s designed for leftovers.
If you’ve never tried our cola Christmas ham option, may we recommend you check that out too?
- 11.9g (4g saturated)
- 2.3g (2.3g sugars)
- no fibre
- 5kg outdoor reared bone-in unsmoked gammon joint
- 2 celery stalks, roughly chopped
- 2 carrots, roughly chopped
- 1 onion, halved
- 1 leek, roughly chopped
- 3 garlic cloves
- 4 bay leaves
- Cloves for studding
- 150ml runny honey
- 1 tsp five-spice powder
You’ll also need…
- Digital probe thermometer
- Put the gammon joint in a large pan (see Tips) and cover the meat completely with cold water. Bring to a simmer over a low-medium heat, skimming off and discarding any scum that rises to the surface until it has mostly stopped. If necessary, top up the pan with more water. Add the celery, carrots, onion, leek, garlic and bay leaves, then bring back up to a simmer.
- Gently simmer the gammon for 2 hours, topping up with more water as necessary so the meat is always covered. If your pan isn’t quite large enough to cover the meat completely, turn the gammon over halfway through the cooking time. If your joint weighs less than 5kg, simmer for 20 minutes per 500g.
- Push a probe thermometer into the centre of the joint. It needs to read 70°C or above. If necessary, continue to cook the meat until it reaches the required temperature.
- Heat the oven to 210°C/190°C fan/ gas 61⁄2. Wrap a clean tea towel around the largest exposed bone at the top of the gammon joint to get a grip on it, then carefully pull the meat out of the pan and put it on a roasting tray on a chopping board. Strain the cooking liquid (discard the solids) to use later for the glaze.
- Using a small, thin knife, carefully strip the rind from the outside of the gammon joint, leaving the layer of fat underneath intact as much as possible (this will protect the meat and stop it drying out). Let the rind fall into the tray. Without slicing into the meat, score the fat in a decorative diamond pattern: take the knife diagonally from one end of the joint to the other, scoring parallel lines 2cm apart, then repeat in the opposite direction. Push a single clove into the centre or corner of each diamond shape. Remove the rind from the tray and discard (see Make Ahead).
- Roast for 10 minutes, then turn the tray around in the oven (so the ham cooks evenly) and cook for 10 minutes more.
- Pour 2 medium ladles of the reserved cooking liquid into the roasting tray (see tip). Add the honey and five-spice powder to the tray and mix with the cooking liquid to make a glaze. Baste the meat all over with the glaze, pushing it into the scored lines with a brush, then roast for a further 10-15 minutes. Continue to baste the joint every 5 minutes, turning the meat in the tray each time, until it’s covered in a sticky glaze.
- Carefully remove the ham from the oven. Set on a platter, then slice and serve with any roasting juices.
The remaining cooking liquid in step 7 can either be discarded or used as a stock for soup. It will be quite salty, so be careful with seasoning.
It’s important to use a pan big enough to cook the whole ham, as it will need to be submerged in water throughout the entire cooking process – so beg, borrow or steal a giant pan if you don’t already have one.
Make to the end of step 5, then cool and chill for up to 2 days before completing the recipe to serve. Any leftover ham will keep, covered and chilled, for up to 3 days or in the freezer, wrapped, for up to 3 months.
When gammon (cured in the same way as bacon) is cooked it becomes ham.
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