Holiday madness in San Francisco, or my own insanity. Home from a week of tasting Tuscan wines at the W&S New York office; somehow my flight left Newark on Friday following a daylong storm of snow and icy rain. Once 6 hours had passed on the tarmac I began to wonder what people were thinking after that first winter in the Northeast 400 years ago; why, really, stay? I doubt Puritans were that masochistic…
But then I’m from California, inherently weak in the knees and cold in the feet when it comes to things like icy rain.
Speaking of winter, it’s time for ham! My friend Max, a meatmaster of sorts, supplied us with a savory cured ham for Saturday’s holiday fete. His directions for preparation appear following. Kids, do try this at home!
Follow the directions on the label. They are good and I have sometimes fucked up the ham by focusing on the crisp and then drying it out. Always cool to blast it at the very end @ broil to achieve optimum, smoky cranklins of joy and pleasure…should the directions not assuage this need. One thing Jeremy did which was solid was to crosshatch the fat covering over the whole skin side; ending up with 2×2 squares (cut just down to that middle-ground between the lean and the fat). He glazed the son’bitch as well; a unique opportunity to be creative etc. Not sure when he applied the glaze though. Oh yeah…don’t forget to take the beast out of the fridge a few hours before; a soft initial move prior to your imminent scorching attack. Now that I think of it…if you choose to slash, take action straight outta the fridge before before the higher temp renders fat and makes it a sloppy bitch. I am still on the fence on the basting and slashing; I hate the break the sanctity of something after it has been through such long and complicated voyage. Frankly…it is your call and I am certain that if you place both your hands upon the ham, close your eyes and ask it directly for its opinion…your direction will be clear. Be the ham and the ham will be yours.
Sage holiday wisdom…
*Note, some missing directions: the goal is heat the ham to an internal temperature of 140 degrees. Set the oven to around 300 degrees and roast the ham in a shallow roasting pan with a rack for about 2 hours; you’ll want to handle the scoring, etc, mentioned above about an hour or so into the total cooking time.
(Sorry, no pic!)