Make the perfect Christmas ham with this recipe!
If ham is frozen, thaw it in its plastic package, for 3 days in the refrigerator for a 7 kg ham, 5 days for a 10 kg ham. A 10 kg ham is considered better-tasting as the pig has gotten bigger.
Before putting the ham in the oven, take it out from the refrigerator and let come it closer to room temperature. If you intend to put the ham in the oven in the evening, take it out during the early morning. The ham should be about 10C (50F) when you put it in the oven.
Use a wet paper towel to clean the ham a bit; then dry it.
Place ham on baking tray in oven, with some water on the tray. Or, if you have a large roasting bag, there is no need for water. Note: do not use only the grill as it lets drop all the liquid from the ham, messing up your oven if the roasting bag fails. However, you can use the grill and put the ham on it and baking tray beneath that. An aluminum foil can also be used on the baking tray.
Preheat oven to 200C (you can skip this if you are not worried about the possible bacteria on the ham) and let ham roast in the warm oven for half an hour, then turn temperature down.
Cook at 100 – 125C, for about 1 hour/kilo, so a 7 kg ham will take 7 hours or more, until meat thermometer shows 75 – 80C. ‘Traditional’ ham is ready at 80C but most take the ham out of the oven at 77C or so, when the ham has more water left in it and is considered tastier. The use of a meat thermometer is recommended because the actual temperature of an oven commonly varies from its setting; thus the ham can be severely under- or overcooked if you do not use a thermometer. Thermometer should be placed in the middle of the ham. Be careful that it does not touch the oven walls. You can test if the thermometer works properly before using it by dipping it in boiling water – it should show about 100C.
After you take the ham out of the oven, wait a little while before removing the thermometer. It is recommended you do not pour the liquid from the bag or baking tray down the drain.
Wait until ham is cool enough to handle, then glaze it with mustard and breadcrumbs. First remove the rind from the ham, then cover the ham with mustard, then with breadcrumbs. Put in 250C oven for 10 minutes. Ham is ready to eat when it has cooled down a bit. This makes about enough for 3 or 4 people for a week, but if you think you will not eat it all within a week, freeze the rest.