Baked Easter Ham

img_5015Cooking for Families

A baked ham is one of the easiest things to prepare for Easter or any holiday celebration. Half a ham can easily feed a dozen people. I baked an un-sliced, bone-in, half ham, from the shank end. The butt end often has more meat, but because of the shape of the bone at that end, is more difficult to cut.

You Will Need:

Half un-sliced, bone-in, shank end ham
3 tablespoons sweet hot honey mustard (or brown mustard with honey)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
About 50 cloves

What to Do:

1. Let ham come close to room temperature by removing the ham from the refrigerator (still wrapped) a couple of hours before you intend to cook it.This will help it warm more evenly.

2. Score the skin and fat of unsliced ham. Place the ham, fattier side up, in a foil-lined roasting pan. Score a diamond pattern in the fat with a sharp knife, about 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch deep, and the parallel lines about 1 1/2-inches apart. Do not score the meat itself, just the fat and any skin. You can score the fat as deeply as to where the fat meets the meat.

3. Insert cloves. You can either put them in before applying the glaze or after. They look better if applied after, but it is easier to see the lines in the ham as a guide for placement if you put them in first. Place the cloves in the center of the diamonds to form a nice pattern around the top and sides of the ham or put the cloves in the intersection points of the scores.

4. Preheat oven to 325°F.

5. Prepare the glaze by mixing the mustard with the brown sugar in a small bowl.

6. Apply the glaze using a pastry brush. Only use about third of it (reserve the rest for later in cooking). Try to work the glaze into the scored lines.

7. Place ham in oven for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or about 10 minutes per pound, until the internal temperature of the ham is 110°-120° with a meat thermometer.

8. Baste the ham with the glaze a couple of times during the cooking. If you check on the ham and think that the glaze is getting too brown, cover with a piece of foil.

9. When the ham has reached the desired temperature, baste again. Place it under the broiler for few minutes to get some nice browning on the top. Take the pan out of the oven and brush the ham all over with pan juices. Cover with aluminum foil and let rest for 15 minutes before serving.

10. To slice a bone-in ham, cut around the bone first. Then use a long, sharp knife to slice off pieces around the bone. Another way to slice the ham is to make first a slice on wide end to get a flat lying surface. Then stand the ham upright on the wide end and make slices down the side, working around the bone.

Recipe adapted from simplyrecipes
Photos by Stephanie Felzenberg

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