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This is an age-old favorite that can be eaten hot or cold at any time of the year.
- 1.5kg raw gammon ham
- 100g onion (1)
- 100g carrot (1)
- 100g leek (1)
- 50g celery (1 stick)
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 sprigs of thyme
- small bunch of parsley
- 1 teaspoon of peppercorns
- about 3 litres of water
- 50g runny honey
- 20g Dijon mustard
Preparation Time: (24 hours soaking time) + 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 2 hours
- Put the ham into a large bowl and put in enough cold water to cover the ham. Put this in the fridge for 3 hours. Then pour away the water, refill it with more cold water and put it back into the fridge overnight. The next morning, pour away the water, refill it with cold water again and put it back into the fridge for another three hours. Finally, pour away the water, refill it with yet more cold water and put it back into the fridge until you are ready to begin cooking.
- Peel the onion and carrot, cut the onion into quarters and chop the carrot, celery and leek into roughly 3cm pieces.
- Place the ham into a large pot and then add in everything else except for the honey and mustard, putting the water in last (put in enough water to cover the ham, the amount will depend on the size of your pot).
- Put the pot onto the heat and bring it up to the boil. Skim off the foamy scum that floats to the surface.
- Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, put the lid on the pot and cook the ham for 2 hours. Check the ham every 30 minutes to make sure the water level is above the top of the ham, if it isn’t, simply add more hot water.
- Preheat a grill and mix together the honey and mustard until they are thoroughly combined.
- Remove the ham from the pot and place it in an oven-proof dish. Peel the skin off the ham, make criss-crossing cuts into the exposed fat and paint the honey and mustard glaze all over the ham. Discard the skin.
- Put the ham under the grill until the glaze has caramelised and turned a golden brown. (Keep watching the ham at this point as it can turn black very quickly.)
- Remove the ham from the grill.
- For the sauce, make a volute using 40g flour, 40g unsalted butter and 200ml milk combined with 200ml of the stock from cooking the ham. When the volute has been made, stir in 100ml of double cream and grate in ½ teaspoon of nutmeg.
- Cut the ham into slices and serve.
- Soaking the ham for 24 hours at the beginning removes most of the salt used to cure the ham, otherwise it would be extremely salty. This method of washing the ham wastes far less water than the alternative method of leaving the ham under a running tap for several hours.
- The ham can be eaten either hot or cold and makes an excellent sandwich filler when sliced thinly.
- The stock left over from cooking the ham is very good for making pea soup if the stock is boiled until it has reduced by half to concentrate the flavour.