Cooking a big joint of gammon can be tricky so here’s a classic fool-proof recipe.
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1¼ hours for a 1.5kg joint
For the gammon :
- 1.5kg gammon joint
- 4-6 tablespoons dry white wine or water
- About 10 cloves
For the glaze :
- 1 tablespoon clear honey
- 40g dark soft brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- Black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (gas mark 4). Lay a piece of foil large enough to enclose the gammon on a large baking tray, put the gammon onto it and lift up the sides of the foil.
2. Pour the wine or water gently over the joint and then fold the foil loosely over it, sealing the edges tightly so moisture does not escape. Bake the meat for 40 minutes per kg about an hour for a joint weighing 1.5kg.
3. While the joint is cooking, stir all the glaze ingredients together.
4. When the gammon has cooked, remove it from the oven and unwrap it. Turn up the oven heat to 200°C (gas mark 6). Using a sharp knife, slice between the skin and fat of the gammon, pulling the skin back as you move across the joint, until the skin comes away.
5. Score the layer of fat in crisscross parallel lines spaced about 2cm apart to form diamond patterns, taking care not to pierce the meat. Then place the joint on a rack in a roasting tin.
6. Stud the gammon with cloves and brush with the glaze. Return to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Serve immediately or leave until cold.
If you think the joint may be too salty, soak it in cold water overnight. To test if this has removed enough salt, cut off a small piece and eat it as it is or fry it gently first. If the meat is still very salty, put the joint into a saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Drain off the water, the joint is now ready for cooking.
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