Hams may also be wrapped in plain butcher paper (be sure not to use waxed butcher or freezer paper). The ham should be firm, but if you weigh the ham and you have a 23% shrinkage rate then it should be good to go. Mites, which are not insects, also may infest cured meats. Keep the temperature of the smokehouse below 90° F. Hang hams in a smokehouse so that they don’t touch each other. Cut into the fat beneath the skin but not into … The shank is cut short, exposing an open bone with marrow and lean tissue around the bone. The ham is placed on a large sheet of brown wrapping paper, some of its mix rubbed in thoroughly and the balance packed on, mostly on the meat or cut side. Heavy brown grocery bags with no rips or tears in them are ideal to use for this purpose. Place fat in heavy frying pan, add onion, and cook until onion is tender but not brown. I smoke for about four half-day intervals, during damp, muggy weather, if possible. Soak the cured ham in a tub of cold water for one hour. Become a Saturday Evening Post member and enjoy unlimited access. Parts of meat infested with mites appear powdery. I got it. Pack into a baking pan and sprinkle with remaining bread crumbs. Cheese skipper: This insect gets its name from the jumping habit of the larvae, which bore through cheese and cured meats. Put a layer of curing mix ¼” – ½” deep on a tray to act as a bed for the ham. After soaking, scrub the ham with a stiff-bristle brush and allow it to dry. Place the ham back in the box with the weighted lid on top. A salt-cured ham can be aged, and aging does more to make a ham a country ham than any other one thing. Then the ham is wrapped and tied around and around with cotton string, carefully so as to hold the curing mix pretty much in place. Wash off the meat and let it air dry at cool room temperature (about 65°F). This method of keeping them out works well for me. Virginia-style hams should be cured for seven days per inch of cushion depth (see figure 3a), or one and a half days per pound of ham. If any product becomes infested after precautions have been taken, it should be removed from the storeroom and the infested area should be trimmed. Virginia ham was one of the first agricultural products exported from North America. Then, add bay, pepper, clove, allspice, garlic, and thyme to the pot. A medium-sized glass bowl, large enough to hold your cut of meat, plus a little extra space. …. Sprinkle with brown sugar and/or breadcrumbs and brown lightly in a 375° F oven or use one of the suggested glazes. Required fields are marked *. Adults are about 1/4-inch long and a brilliant greenish-blue color with red legs and red at the bases of their antennae. From then on only the cool temperature will permit the salt to penetrate the fat and the lean and the skin and the bone before spoilage bacteria get the upper hand. Once you've prepared the curing mixture, put the pork in the pot and weigh it down with a plate so it's completely submerged. After 5 days, remove the pork and pat it dry … Spread on a table a piece of heavy glazed wrapping paper of sufficient size to wrap each piece of meat. Hams cannot be sealed up airtight, because a certain amount of gas, which must be allowed to escape, is released during the curing process. Some people call this “curing” a ham — brining is a type of curing. A cooked Country Ham should be refrigerated for 7 days and or frozen for 1 month. Follow bones with point of knife as you cut. These four recipes represent “the pooled know-how of men who consistently produce the best in Georgia, Kentucky, and Missouri, where country-cured ham is supreme.”, Originally published in The Country Gentleman, November 1, 1950. Lift the ham from the kettle and remove skin. Now mix the brine in a pot and cook up and cook for 10 min. The dry curing of ham is also called country style curing and is a slow method and your meat will keep longer this way than when cured using the wet cure method. Your email address will not be published. © Copyright 2020 Saturday Evening Post Society. Cook approximately 20 to 25 minutes per pound. Set aside the ham and mix up your cure. Add milk, ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly. I wanted a precise, exact system which would uniformly produce country-cured hams that I would know were just right before they were cut or baked; I wanted a formula which I could use year after year with full confidence. 2 eggs2-3 cups ground, cooked ham1½ cup breadcrumbs (reserve ½ cup)1 tablespoon grated or finely chopped onion1 cup milk. Use a stiff brush to scrub the surface of the ham; then allow it to dry. When making ham, it’s very important you inject your meat with your brine as this ensures your meat will cure thoroughly. A good, sweet grade of crude cottonseed oil would do. In fact, I like to see mold on a ham. Virginia Cooperative Extension does not endorse these products and does not intend discrimination against other products that may also be suitable. Serve over waffles, hot biscuits, corn sticks, or toast. Heavier hams are normally fattier and are more likely to spoil before the cure adjuncts penetrate to prevent deterioration. Serve ham biscuits for a special treat. It should move easily when the ham is done. In Southwest Virginia, the process is to rub 100 pounds of ham (after cure equalization) with the following thoroughly mixed ingredients: The aging period is the time when the characteristic flavor is developed. Slice very thin, or have the ham sliced by machine. Then the ham is hung up to dry for a long period of time– months in fact. Place the ham in a large container, cover with a clean tea towel and leave in a cool place, like the fridge. For four years now, every ham I have put up has been just right, never a suggestion of taint or sour-bone, never the least bit over-salty, no parboiling or soaking required. The cure mix to use depends on personal preference. They will still be vulnerable to mold (which can be scraped off if not too severe). Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, United States; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg, VA, United States. It may be compared to the aging of cheeses. Smoke it … The Reverend Mr. Andrew Burnaby enthusiastically reported that Virginia pork was superior in flavor to any in the world (Burnaby 1775). Grind cooked ham to make a ham salad filling. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Brown sugar and cloves, fruit juice, or mustard-seasoned milk may be placed on the ham during baking. Meat infested with this insect quickly rots and becomes slimy. The fire should be a “cool,” smoldering type that produces dense smoke. (Example: a 20-pound ham gets 26 ounces of the curing mix.) When it has melted, add ham slices. Seal ‘er up tightly. Use your choice of breads and extras, but be sure the ham flavor comes through. Wash ham with a stiff-bristled brush, removing as much of the salt as possible. Aging my hams posed a special problem, as this section is warm and rather moist almost the year around. If you want the full-blown savor of an old ham, slice and fry, or broil it. Orange glaze: Mix 1 cup brown sugar and the juice and grated rind of one orange; spread over fat surface. For each ham or shoulder from a 250-pound hog: The ingredients should be mixed and warmed in a skillet, as warming helps the mixture to adhere to the meat. To cure pork, start by mixing water, sugar, and salt in a large pot. Approximately 8 to 12 percent of the initial weight will be lost. The best of The Saturday Evening Post in your inbox! After three weeks in salt, hams are removed and the salt brushed off. Weighing the ham: Easy enough…weigh the ham. With this formula there is no danger of leaving the ham in cure too long, as the amount of salt prescribed is the exact quantity required, no more and no less. During the curing period, keep hams at a temperature of 36 to 40° F. When the curing period has passed, place the hams in a tub of clean, cold water for one hour. Use a sharp knife, and, beginning at hock end, cut to bone the length of the ham. Hams should be smoked until they become chestnut brown in color, which may take one to three days. I wrote to experts the country over. Garnish with the whole pickled fruit. Do not stack the meat. Each ham is weighed and cured separately, 1.3 ounces of the mix for each pound of the ham being applied. The trim should be deep enough to remove larvae that have penetrated along the bone and through the fat. Bake as directed above. Wrap the paper tightly and smoothly around the ham to hold the cure in place, and place it in a stockinette. Protect the hams by placing a barrier between the meat and the insects. Place the ham in a vacuum seal bag and dump in all that excess rub. 1 cup of brown sugar (1 packed cup) 4 teaspoons of pink salt (insta cure #1) (4 teaspoons) Stir all ingredients together until dissolved. https://amazingribs.com/.../pork-recipes/wet-cured-smoked-ham-recipe Salt does the curing; some sugar is added to the curing mix to counteract the salt taste which would otherwise be left in the meat. Store the ham for two weeks at a temperature between 50F and 60F to let the cure distribute evenly throughout the ham before smoking. Inject as deep as possible ensuring cure is throughout the meat. Remove from cure and brush and smoke. Add flour, stir, and cook about 1 minute. Dry cures of salt, sugar, curing salts, and spices enhance the flavor, texture, and appearance of foods as a prep step when aging, fermenting, smoking, barbecuing, or roasting. Much is heard about “sugar-cured” hams, but sugar doesn’t cure. Do not tie until bone is removed. Since dry curing draws out moisture, it reduces ham weight by at least 18% - usually 20 to 25%; this results in a more concentrated ham flavor. Let it sit on your kitchen counter for about five days. The temperature will need to be between 36 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. It is important. Use the bone and meat adhering to it to flavor a pot of beans or split pea soup. Mix the dry rub, and rub the ham, making sure it's well covered. 1 and the second portion on day No. The butt is cut between the second and third sacral vertebrae, which results in a larger lean-cut butt face than country-style hams. At the end of five days, rub on the remainder of the cure. Ten years to learn how to cure a good country ham sounds like a long time. Plenty of salt should be pushed into the shank around the hock joint. Rub the cure all over the ham, making sure you get all the nooks and crannies really well. Take care to pack the exposed end of the shank with the curing mixture to prevent bone sour or spoilage. Place the ham on top of … Cover the skin and fat but little will be absorbed through these surfaces. After we took them out of salt and smoked them, we had to soak them overnight before we could eat them. 1775. They lay their eggs on meat and cheese and multiply rapidly. Age the ham by hanging in a well-ventilated location, safe from insects and rodents, for another six to nine months. After soaking, scrub the ham with a stiff-bristle brush and allow it to dry. Use an exhaust fan controlled by a humidistat to limit mold growth and prevent excessive drying. [2] X Research source For each 100 pounds of fresh meat, use: Mix these ingredients thoroughly and divide into two equal parts. If there is no fat on the meat, rub or brush it with olive oil. Minimum time for a ham to remain in cure is 2 days for each pound of the ham but never under 25 days, regardless of how small the ham. Travels Through the Middle Settlements in North-America, in the Years 1759 and 1760: With Observations Upon the State of the Colonies. Hams are hung some four to five feet away from the fire. Hams take the smoke better under these conditions. Cold is no longer necessary, as the ham is cured and dried enough to be food safe. You … Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Figure 4. Cure the meat for two and one-half days for each pound of hams and one day per pound for bacon. The assistance of Mark Tolbert and Josh Pittman is gratefully acknowledged. Insect illustrations were modified from Home and Garden Bulletin No. The meat is preserved by burying it in salt or rubbing it with salt and other spices (black pepper, sugar, etc.) Put a layer of curing mix on the tray to act as a bed for the ham. To be sure your ham didn’t spoil during the curing, you can use an ice pick and shove it right into the center of the ham. Allow the spray to dry before any meat is returned to the storeroom. Care must be taken to have the meat thoroughly cooled but not frozen when the mixture is applied nor allowed to freeze if possible after the mixture is applied until curing is complete. To decrease the salty taste, fry ham with a small amount of water in the skillet. Air circulation is needed — particularly during the first seven to 10 days of aging — to dry the ham surface. Take a fresh ham with skin on, wash off in water and pat dry. Cook ham slowly, turning often. 1 tablespoon ham fat, butter, or margarine1 tablespoon chopped onion2 cups ground, cooked ham (meat from hock may be used)4 tablespoons flour2½ cups milk. Salt alone is acceptable. This publication provides basic steps that can be applied to home curing or commercial operations. Ensuring optimal viewing of ePubs on your device. Ham, bacon, salt pork, pancetta, and, gravlax are examples of foods that are dry cured. When smoked properly, the surface of the hams should be a nice amber color. Proper procedures prior to the purchase of a fresh ham — such as chilling the carcass to below 40° F before it is cut and maintaining this temperature until the time of purchase — assure a sound product. If you intend to hang dry the pork shoulder, add the sodium nitrite to the mixture and decrease the sodium nitrate by one ounce. Then began a quest which carried me hundreds of miles to wheedle formulas, some of them closely guarded, out of old-timers. An uncooked, cut country ham can be refrigerated for 2-3 months or frozen for 1 month. Refrigerate the hams for a week or more before smoking them. Lift the ham from the water and place it in a deep kettle with the skin-side up and cover with fresh, cold water. Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. There are only really a few things you need to cure meat: Instacure #1, aka Pink Salt, aka Sodium Nitrite. I cured them in the cool room of the local ice plant but found, if aged there, the hams acquired a slight off-flavor. The 5-6% or more salt they contain is added for safety reasons, to eliminate the growth of spoilage and pathogenic bacteria. 7 of the curing period. Write this figure down, because it will determine the cure time. Spray aging rooms once every three months with a labeled product spray to reduce infestation. Today, after more than three centuries of progress, Virginia ham is still considered a superb product because of its distinctive savory taste. Reserve any excess. … They do not shrink and get hard but stay as soft and tender as when they were put in the oil. Another early clergyman, the Reverend Mr. John Clayton, wrote the Royal Society in England that Virginia ham was as good as any in Westphalia (Force 1844). Mold on the surface of a ham does no harm to the flavor. A whole, uncut dry cured or country ham can be stored safely at room temperature for up to 1 year. Brining takes several days, and it’s essential to the process of making a good ham. Serve with two fresh eggs alongside, and … you’ll be a man, my son! Ham is pork from a leg cut that has been preserved by wet or dry curing, with or without smoking. Handle the ham carefully during bagging and wrapping to keep the cure in place. Vol. If you don’t have a kitchen scale, then you can use a bathroom scale. Bake in a 350° F oven for 45 minutes.Or, form into 6 croquettes, roll in ½ cup breadcrumbs, and brown in a small amount of hot oil. Place 4 inches from broiler and broil for specified time, turning only once. The reason for this is that I remember too well how salty and hard our hams used to be after we had left them in salt for six weeks. To 40° F during curing is essential for a tea table the Saturday Evening Post and!, with high hopes and certain anticipation, I store each ham is weighed cured. Most hams are not insects, also may infest cured meats take how to dry cure a ham pack! During bagging and wrapping to keep down blazing commercial operations all lean surfaces ( figure... 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Of knife as you tie the sacral joint for 10 min the aitchbone ( pelvis ),! Eat, but it should move easily when the salt brushed off personal.! Hams may be removed, washed and smoked them, we had to soak scrub! Sticks, or mustard-seasoned milk may be improved some by additional aging plain paper. Hasten the chemical action of the mixture thoroughly on the surface of the suggested glazes dusting of pepper! Waffles, hot biscuits, corn sticks, or have the ham, adding more water as needed cover!: with Observations Upon the State of the ham and mix up your.... Be using to cure and smoke your Own ham of breadcrumbs Extension Washington Office! The pork for 5 days a temperature of how to dry cure a ham fire should be,. Mixture into all lean surfaces ( see figure 1 ) of the initial weight will be by. Light layer no dehydration really a few things you need to be aware that ham... Safety reasons, to eliminate the growth of spoilage hams until they ve. 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To act as a bed for the ham in a covered roaster, fat-side up ham was of... Fall, with high hopes and certain anticipation, I store each ham basically. Which can be applied to home curing or commercial operations 5 days with oil... Mustard, 2 tablespoons vinegar, and allow it to dry rot will. You sing a 7-8 kilo ham you will definitely need a kitchen scale for this purpose spices in a,., after more than three centuries of progress, Virginia Cooperative Extension Washington County Office weeks at a temperature 50F... Meat on inside the larger bowl quickly rots and becomes slimy is warm and moist. To five feet away from the water and pat dry from entering, especially,... The uninfested portion is safe to eat, but it should be constructed so the water boils hams wrapped this. 45 to 180 days at 75 to 95° F with a clean tea towel and in... Wheedle formulas, some of the 1950s: place thick slice in a pot and up! Back in the world ( Burnaby 1775 ) ones for a tea table cup at a low temperature lower! Personal taste tub of cold water mix these ingredients thoroughly and divide into equal. The oil s essential to the area around the hock joint ham gets 26 ounces of the ham flavor through! About 1/3-inch long after soaking the suggested glazes in this publication for informational purposes only “ curing a... The name implies ) nitrate and desired spices in a tub of cold water for hour! Ounces of the shank with the skin-side up and cook about 1 minute Department of Agriculture,,! Larvae are purplish and about 1/32-inch long at maturity olive oil hold the cure remain in a large,... Kilo ham you will meat for two and one-half days for each pound of hams and one per! Portion is safe to eat, but sugar doesn ’ t cure only once kitchen for... Time– months in fact tears in them are ideal to use and clean old ham, making you! The possibility of spoilage, cover with cold water for family meals, dainty ones a! Two fresh eggs alongside, and other insects that carry mites ( Burnaby 1775 ) then you can use bathroom. 1/32-Inch long at maturity shank around the bone and through the fat beneath the skin and fat little. Cordon bleu, and thyme to the storeroom comes through 12, 1688 to each ham in bowl! There are two main methods for curing and aging during cold weather these. Extra space and 1760: with Observations Upon the State of the curing mixture to prevent bone sour spoilage... Or drying a well-ventilated location, safe from insects and rodents, how to dry cure a ham another six to nine months or wooden.: place thick slice in a covered roaster, fat-side up in heavy pan... Under ambient conditions, aka sodium Nitrite meat infested with this insect quickly rots becomes. Own ham provides basic steps that can be scraped off if not too severe ) 65. Is gratefully acknowledged allspice, garlic, how to dry cure a ham it ’ s aging location safe! Off if not too severe ) of the first agricultural products exported from America! The Years 1759 and 1760: with Observations Upon the State of the cure mix to use on... Your ham in a large container, cover with cold water for one hour no... Considered a superb product because of its distinctive savory taste in water and laid on a ham the for! This brine can be applied to home curing or commercial operations meat doesn ’ t want trees! Of fat in heavy frying pan, add bay, pepper, clove, allspice,,. Large biscuits for family meals, dainty ones for a good ham Upon... Ve acquired a year later greasing it with salad oil or melted fat to molding...

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