Chip Mom’s Kitchen #6: Bake a Damn Ham

- Posted November 30th, 2013 by

I love cookies.  I love pies.  I love cakes, and brownies, and tarts.  But lets get real: Sometimes you just gotta bake a damn ham.  Ham is delicious and deceptively simple; volunteering to cook one also scores you MAJOR holiday brownie points with the primary chef of the family.  With that it mind lets gather round and drool over…

Maple Dijon Ham

Difficulty level:
Newb          |         Apprentice         |         Journeyman         |         Master

Requires a certain amount of dedication to get up early to put in the oven, but you can nap while its baking!

Quest Items:

Whole Grain dijon mustard
Maple syrup
Brown sugar
Ground cinnamon
Ground nutmeg
Spiral Sliced Ham
Aluminum baking pan
Aluminum foil
Medium skillet
Whisk
Basting brush or spoon
Meat thermometer
Cookie sheet (you know I’d work cookie something in there)

Musical Accompaniment:

Illustrated Guide:

Gather round all ye ingredients!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once you’ve got everything, go to bed. That’s right, prep this stuff the night before. Chances are your family is eating its holiday “dinner” at like noon or 1 o’clock, so you’re going to have to get your butt up at a reasonable hour to do this. Plan for 2 hours of cooking and whatever travel time you have to transport a ham from place A to place B.

When you wake up in the morning, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Put your baking pan onto the cookie sheet for strength! The bottoms do fall out of those things. Then, place your spiral sliced ham face down into your baking pan, pouring 3/4 cups water into the bottom. You do this to help keep the ham moist while you reheat it.

~Yes, you’re reheating.~

Most likely your ham is pre-cooked as well as sliced. Placing the meaty side face down keeps the juices from leaking out and drying out the ham.  Now you can cover that sucker with aluminum foil and put it in your pre-heated oven.

Sometimes your ham will come with one of these packets of “glaze spices”:

You know what you do with these things?

You are better than that.  You’re gonna make your own damn glaze for your own damn ham with five easy-to-find ingredients: syrup, mustard, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

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Prep all the dry goods for your glaze (1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg) in a skillet on your stove since early mornings need all the organizational help they can get!

 

Now set your timer for an hour and a half, then set your alarm…ITS NAP TIME!!!

When you come back to the ham, check its internal heat with a meat thermometer (If you don’t have one, you really should get one before attempting a roast or a ham – it comes in all kinds of handy).  When reheating I usually shoot for about 110 degrees; your ham should be approaching that.  Add 1/2 cup maple syrup and 2 tablespoons whole grain dijon to the dry ingredients already in your skillet.  Whisk together over medium heat, letting it simmer (lots of tiny bubbles) for 2 minutes.

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When everything is reduced and bubbly, carefully take out your ham and put it on the stove. Pour your glaze from the skillet onto the pan and spread it into all the little nooks and crannies with either a basting brush or spoon.

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Take your time and make sure to get your glaze all over the ham.  You want the flavor to be in every bite that folks take.

 

 

 

 

Now, bump up the heat in your oven to 400 degrees and place the ham back inside for about 20 minutes.  The glaze will bubble, caramelize, and harden on the surface of the ham – all these things mean deliciousness is happening!

EXTREME CLOSE UP!

After 20 minutes, take your ham out of the oven, recover with aluminum foil, and lay towels over the top to keep in the heat in during transport.  If your ham isn’t going anywhere, make sure you give it 10 minutes to rest before slicing.  It has had a long day after all!

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Hope this helps you to be your home’s hero some day soon!  As always, I encourage you to come on over to the Chip Mom facebook page to share stories and pictures of your cooking adventures!

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