Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Spiced Ham

This fragrant ham will make your house smell like the holidays; it’s studded with cloves and anise seeds.

Spiced Ham
Serves 12

For the ham:
1 (4- to 6-pounds ) boneless ham
8 3/4 fluid ounces red wine
3 liters water (approximately)
1 large onion, halved
2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
2 star anise
1 tablespoon coriander seed
1 tablespoon fennel seed
1 tablespoon mixed peppercorns

For the glaze:
Approximately 16 whole cloves
4 tablespoons red currant jelly
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar

Place the ham in a large saucepan. Add all the ingredients for the ham to the pan, adding more water if the ham isn't covered. Bring to the boil, before reducing the heat to a simmer and partially covering the pan. Cook for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours, plus an extra 15 minutes.

When you are ready to glaze the ham, preheat oven to 440 degrees.

Remove the ham from the liquid and sit the ham on a board. Strip off the rind, and a little of the fat layer if it's very thick, and cut a diamond pattern into the remaining fat with a sharp knife in lines of about 3/4-inch apart. Stud each diamond with a clove. Put the jelly, cinnamon, paprika and red wine vinegar into a saucepan and whisk together over a high heat bringing it to the boil. Let the pan bubble away so that the glaze reduces to a syrup-like consistency.

Place a layer of foil over a roasting tray big enough to hold the ham. Place the ham on top of the foil. Pour the glaze over the clove-studded ham and then transfer it to the oven. Cook for about 15 minutes, or until the glazed fat is burnished. Allow the meat to rest in a warm place for at least 15 minutes before carving it.

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