Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Easter "HAM"

I'm not doing too well blogging so far, I'm going to have to find the time to keep things updated more regularly. Anyways here is some details on what I did for Easter....

I'm not a big fan of serving a store-bought ham for the holidays. I usually find them dry and not interesting. Now, an authentic country ham is a completely different story!

This year for Easter I tried something a bit different. I bought a couple of pork butts, the cut traditionally used to make pulled pork, and made 'ham'. Ham of course is made with the rear leg of the pig and the pork butt is actually the upper front shoulder. There is a lot more fat and flavor in the shoulder. In addition you can cook it a lot longer and get something super tender... in contrast if you were to over-cook a ham, instead of tender you'd get cardboard.

What I did is cooked the pork butts the way I do when preparing barbecue, except I dropped the barbecue flavors and instead applied ham flavors to the pork butts. I applied a cure for a couple hours in order to impart a hammy pinkness on the outer part of the butts. I then rubbed with brown sugar and a bit of pumpkin pie spice. I smoked the butts on my Big Green Egg overnight for about 10 hrs at 235*. Near the end of the cook I applied a ham glaze (apple cider, maple syrup, spicy mustard and bourbon). I pulled the butts off at an internal temp of 185*, cooled, refrigerated. I then sliced the cold butts about 1" thick.

Then simply when my guests arrived I gently warmed the slices, apply a bit more glaze and served. Seemed to go over very well. I think the only thing I'd change next time is the brown sugar dry rub didn't add much to the flavor profile. The ham glaze was intense. Next time I'll probably just salt and pepper the butts and skip the brown sugar rub. Couple of pics:

Finished Butts:

Sliced and glazed:

1 comment:

WhiteTrashBBQ said...

Hey, You're doing great with the blogging. It took me a long time to get into the swing of posting regularly. It's not as easy as it looks.

Keep it up and good luck at Salisbury!