Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year - AM

I went to bed at 10pm on New Year's Eve and woke up this morning at 6am so I could prepare THE HAM. And, yes, of course we are having black-eyed peas! Hoppin' John Stew. Ham stock base, Cajun seasoning, beans and rice. This is my favorite way to have black eyed peas except for the Texas Caviar mentioned by my Aunt Jennifer. I was going to make that too and forgot! Oh well.

This is the 17lb, skin on, fresh ham prior to cutting my beautiful, meditative diamond pattern.




This is after an hour of cutting with a serrated knife through the skin and fat, being careful not to cut into the meat. Does it look like it would be hard? Well, I hope so because it was a big fucking pain in the ass. I almost gave up half way through, chucked my $30 in the trash and called it a lesson learned. But, I didn't. I think I can, however, say with 100% certainty that I will never make a 17lb fresh ham again. If it's really good I might make a smaller one . . .



I put the ham in a brine of salt, brown sugar, garlic, bay leaves, and black peppercorns around 2pm yesterday and retrieved it at 6am this morning. It is now sitting for an hour at room temperature before I apply the Garlic and Herb Rub and then pop that motherfucker in the oven.



To be continued . . . .

4 comments:

Jennifer said...

The ham looks absolutely gorgeous. We had a fresh ham for Christmas in Ireland, and I had no idea you could even BUY a fresh ham. I assumed they were always smoked before packaging. For your encouragement, I couldn't believe the difference in taste, and that was without all the extra brining, garlic/herb rub ect. I wish I could have some. And your stew sounds delightful. Now. I hope your guests appreciate your culinary brilliance and toast you appopriately! Love you.

Connie said...

That sucker's huge! Imagine how much fat you're gonna have in the bottom of your pan. I like that you included the pictures and all the details. My little soup of mixed beans and turkey sausage looks pretty hokey next to this. I won't bore you with pictures.

Jennifer said...

per my clock, you have 30 minutes left before Partaaay time. Do you have enough Champagne? Bathrooms are clean with extra toilet paper? You're dressed in clean jeans and have taken off the apron? The ham should just about be ready...

what would I do without your party's?

Sarah in Disturbia said...

thank you, ladies!! I have felt and enjoyed your comforting words throughout my entire party!!!