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Festive Ham with Orange and Spices

Image by Ali Green


For the Ham:

3kg approx. Primrose Herd ham

1 cinnamon stick

1 star anise

1 onion, roughly chopped

1 carrot, roughly chopped

1 celery, roughly chopped

1 tsp mixed spice

1 clementine or orange, studded with 10 cloves

A few Bay leaves

For the Glaze:

35g soft brown sugar

75g orange marmalade

50g whole grain mustard

25g honey

20 cloves approximately, to stud


Begin by placing your ham in a large saucepan and covering with cold water. Place a lid on the pan and bring to a gentle boil, letting it simmer for about 10 minutes before removing from the heat and draining off the water – this process removes any unwanted salts in the meat. Refill the pan with clean cold water along with the carrot, celery, onion, mixed spice, an orange or clementine studded with about 10 cloves, and the bay leaves. Return to the stove and gently simmer for about 2 hours, topping up with hot water if necessary. After this time, preheat your oven to 200˚C and remove the ham from the water, allowing it to stand for 15 minutes. Place all the glaze ingredients into a small bowl and mix well.

When the ham has rested and is cool enough to handle, use a sharp knife to cut off the strings and then cut away the skin, leaving the layer of fat underneath. Use your knife to carve a decorative crosshatch pattern into the soft fat around the joint, then place the ham into a baking tray before pouring over the glaze – if needed use a pastry brush to get the glaze deep into the scores in the fat. Using the tip of your knife, create small cuts at intervals and plug with the dried cloves to stud the joint. Place the ham into the middle of the hot oven and bake for 30 minutes, basting with the runoff glaze after 15 minutes. Enjoy hot or cold.

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