Baked Ham

Serves many – depends on the size of the ham

This recipe was written out by my mother perhaps 70 years ago and assumes a whole, cured, but uncooked ham, a process that you may want to spread over two days.

Since then, we have become used to partially cooked ham in various portions. I have tried to adapt this recipe for all eventualities. The most important part of the meal, however, is Mother's Secret Ham Sauce, which you should make to go with it. .

For cooking a raw ham:

5-6 sticks of cinnamon

10 whole cloves

3-5 cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly cut

1 cup cider vinegar

1 cup sugar

For a partially cooked ham:

1 cup brown sugar

2 tbsp dry mustard

cider vinegar to moisten

whole cloves as needed

¼ cup cider vinegar

¾ cup water

For cooking a raw ham:

  1. Place ham in a large cooking pot and add boiling water to cover. Add the spices and sugar and heat.
  2. Keep water at a very low simmer; do not let it come to a boil.
  3. Cook for 3 ¾ hours. Remove from heat and let stand for 4 hours.
  4. If not finishing the process immediately, refrigerate the ham until ready to continue. Then, do the following;
  5. For a partially cooked ham:

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

  1. Peel the skin off the ham, leaving as much of the fat intact as possible.
  2. Prepare the sugar and mustard mixture, moistening it with cider vinegar, and rub it on the ham.
  3. Score the fat into diamonds, if there is enough of it, and stick a whole clove into the center of each diamond.
  4. Place in a roasting pan with the vinegar and water in the bottom.
  5. Cook for about 20 minutes per pound, or until an instant-reading meat thermometer reads 160ºF. Baste with the pan liquid occasionally. Add liquid if it evaporates.
  6. When done, allow to stand for up to ½  hour before serving.
  7. Prepare Mother's Ham Sauce and serve immediately.

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