The Easter of Two Hams, Except One that Wasn’t

Easter is my favorite time of year to feed ham and pork products to the chosen peeps. Two years makes it a trend, right? Or do those years have to be in a row? Any way, years ago I was all “I’mma be adult and have Easter dinner!” which meant buying one of those big ass spiral cut Easter hams (b/c spiral cut = fancy) and then realizing that it was way too big for two people. And the only people free that night were my Jewish friends, so they came over for dinner and I fed them ham.
This year, The Profussor brought his family over to eat some pork products in the middle of Passover. Dude, that is some serious friendship. Or love of ham. Or friendship born of ham-love. Either way. Very stellar.

This year I decided to smoke a ham. That ham above. It was an uncured baby from 8 O’Clock Ranch, and I cured it while I was on vaycay in VA Beach with some of that magical pink curing salt from Jon in Albany.

I rubbed it with some brown sugar, maple syrup, mustard, and that was about it. Then hot-smoked it with maple chips for a few hours. Kinda dry, but in that cured meat way. The bone is going to make a pretty sweet pea soup. It was also PINK!

But that roast was only like 2.5 lbs, and it shrunk a lot in the smoker, so then I was all “I don’t have enough food, I need to buy more or I’m a terrible hostess!” and I picked up a ham from Roma Foods. They called it a ham roast, but it was really just pork roast uncured. I wasn’t really sure if it was ham or just pork, but hey, more meat, right?

I probably would have done a little more to it if I’d known it was an uncured “ham” roast from a pig, though. I think I overcooked it a touch. I don’t know. I’m a ham gal, not a roast gal. It’s a miracle I didn’t turn it to leather.

We also had some mashed potatoes, beets, artichokes (got ’em from the co-op – the stems tasted so chemically and awful. totally inedible), and some awesome wine the Profussor brought over. Gewurztraminer, right? Just sweet enough. So yum!

I’ve been really into pavlovas lately. So easy to whip up (har har). Just add a cup or so of sugar to 4-6 egg whites. Plop on parchment paper and bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour in a 250 F oven.

You get a crackly exterior, and a soft and squishy interior. Plus the raw whipped egg batter tastes so good while you’re licking the spatula cleaning the bowl.

Brandied pears in an apple cider reduction (toss in a wee sliver of lemon rind, and a few thick slices of ginger) for the adults. Naked slices for the kiddos.

I totally should have made some of these while the FUSSYlittleFAMILY was here, though. Cracklins! The skin didn’t quite crisp up in the oven (more chewy, blah), but pop ’em in a low pan = heaven. Sorry guys, we’ll have to do it again so I don’t forget to make cracklins.

Oh and we also made some half-ass Hello Kitty latkes in a waffle maker.

The family was a blast to have over, and hopefully we can do it again some time soon.

  1. Nice job on smoking that ham – it looks perfect! I'm not really a fan of unsmoked ham (“pork”) either. I know technically ham is the cut of meat, but to me ham isn't ham unless it's pink. None of the “fresh ham” nonsense!

  2. llcwine said:

    looks fabulous….and though I celebrate Passover too, I enjoyed making ham and lamb for Easter with my friends.

  3. It's been a difficult year to find half way decent artichokes

  4. Looks good. Ham is on my list of things to cure. Just haven't gotten around to it yet.

  5. This is the advantage of subscribing to Reform Judaism. I'll gladly have a ham and cheese sandwich on matzoh.

    What I will not do over the holiday is eat something that should be made of chametz, but in this case isn't.

    How can I keep one dietary restriction while completely abandoning another? It's a long story.

    AJ makes one mean ham. You should have seen little miss fussy gobbling that stuff down. It was amazing.

    Mrs. Fussy has now made it out of the house two evenings in three days for large and festive meals. It's like a Pesach/Easter miracle.

    Thank you for a great time and a great meal.

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