I found the most amazing deal on hams last week at FreshCo (my new favourite grocery store – not as flashy as Loblaws but so many great bargains!) and since my daughter dislikes turkey, I bought one for us to have as our Thanksgiving dinner tonight.
I began by placing the ham in a roasting pan and poured about a cup and a half of 7Up over it. In the past I’ve used ginger ale or Pepsi/Coke or even Dr. Pepper – all with great results. I put the ham in the oven (covered with foil) for an hour at 325 degrees F. (I was using the basis of about 18 minutes per pound of cooking time.)
After that hour, I basted the ham with a bit of the 7UP juices that had formed in the pan to moisten it. Then, I took a small jar (about 4 oz.) of pear-cranberry ice wine jelly (apricot jam or jelly or apple or grape jelly are all good on ham too) and mixed it with about a tablespoon of brown sugar and a teaspoon and a half of mustard (you could use Dijon or dry mustard instead). The jelly was close enough to a liquid state that I didn’t need to do anything else to it but in the past, if I’ve used one that’s too solid to brush or even pour over the ham, I will heat the mixture up to melt it a bit first. Brush or pour your glaze over the ham and place back in the oven. (Prior to that you can do the traditional studding with whole cloves and/or placing pineapple slices over the surface of the ham – I didn’t bother this time.) Don’t cover this time. Given the size of this ham, I needed another 1 1/2 hours of cooking time – when I checked it with my meat thermometer, it read about 150 so I removed it from the oven and covered it with foil to allow it to finish cooking and to rest.
I’ve had good ham before but prior to this one, the only time I had truly great ham, aka the absolute best tasting ham ever, was at my step mother’s house. She is a pro at making ham and I never thought I’d be able to come close but this was amazingly similar. It was delicious and the leftovers are just as good served cold!