Monday, April 9, 2012

Home-Cured Easter Ham: The Final Chapter

Easter morning arrived, and the ham went into my preheated Bradley Smoker which was 220F.  
After putting the ham in the smoker it took an hour for the smoker to reach 200F which is the temperature I maintained for the entire process.  Once this temperature was reached I turned on the hickory smoke.
The recipe called for three ingredients for the ham glaze:

  • 1 ½ packed cups/270 grams dark brown sugar
  • ¾ cup/185 milliliters Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon/20 grams minced garlic
When my husband heard I was going to be using a ham glaze that contained garlic, he begged me to omit it from the recipe.  It just didn't live up to his ideal of an Easter ham so that's what I did: left out the garlic.
I made the glaze using the dark brown sugar and dijon mustard.  
This was applied to the ham after it had smoked for two hours.  Half of this mustard/sugar was reserved to apply after the ham is fully cooked.
The smoking continued for 4 more hours and the ham continued to cook in the 200F smoker until it reached an internal temperature of 155F.  At this time the ham is essentially cooked but I wanted the glaze to carmelize.  The remaining glaze was brushed on and the ham was placed in a 325F preheated oven and baked for 30 minutes.  The glaze was bubbly and beautiful!
This was my fourth home-cured ham and the first time using this ham recipe with which I was really pleased with.  Now I have the ham hock also so I will share with you all my favorite pork and beans recipe soon.


  1. It looks absolutely wonderful and I have printed up the recipe so that I can use it when I have to cure my hams.
    What I am wondering is- was it salty? I ask because my bacon has to be soaked for about an hour after it cures and I wondered if ham should be soaked too?

    1. Hams usually are rinsed as are bacon, but never soaked. I think your brine must be too heavy. Try this Maple Bacon Recipe that really works and is great.

  2. Hi Becky!
    When trying a new curing recipe I am always worried about it being too salty but this was spot on salt-wise and it was not soaked in water, only rinsed. I think with a hunk of meat this big that soaking it for an hours in water probably wouldn't reduce the salt by much but I'm only guessing on this.
    With bacon and ham curing, I like using recipes where the salt and cure are separate ingredients because salt can be adjusted and/or reduced without affecting the amount of cure.
    I do hope you try curing a ham :)

    1. Thanks. I am glad this will not have to be soaked. I just have never done one before and wanted to make sure. I was looking at how large my hams were getting today..I mean pigs, lol. I will be looking for those 2 gallon bags, great idea. I am trying to have everything ready come butcher time.