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How to glaze and cook a ham

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The Good Food team show you how to prepare a ham for roasting. Learn how to trim the fat, score the outside and paint on a spice, sugar and mustard rub.

Points to remember

  • Use a sharp knife to carefully cut away the skin and some of the fat leaving an even layer of fat all over.
  • If the ham has cooled sufficiently you will be able to prize the skin away with your hands, trimming any straggly bits off with a knife.
  • To make a criss-cross/diamond pattern in the ham, use a sharp knife to lightly score it, only cutting into the fat and not the meat underneath.
  • Cover the ham generously with your glaze ingredients and if you want to stud the ham, prod the pointed end of a whole clove into each point of diamond pattern.
  • Place the ham, fat-side up in a roasting tin.
  • Place the ham in a hot oven, remember the ham is already cooked so all you are trying to do is caramelise the glaze.
  • After about 20 mins remove the ham from the oven and brush or baste with any sticky juices. Add some more glaze if the ham needs it.
  • Pour a small amount of water into the pan to stop the bottom of the ham burning.
  • Keep a close eye on the ham for about another 20 mins, as glazes are sweet they can burn easily.
  • Baste the ham again towards the end of the cooking if needed.
  • Once it’s completely glazed, leave it to cool and enjoy warm or cold, carved into slices.
  • The glazed ham will keep in the fridge for up to a week and any leftover ham can be sliced and frozen for up to 6 months. 



Leave your cooked ham until it’s cool enough to handle. It’s fine for the ham to be completely cold and this actually makes it easier.


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