While I am not religious, I do enjoy a good family and friends feast day. Easter in my mind is a time for Ham and chocolate... if I get those two things on Easter, I'm a happy lady.
Ham, much like Turkey, can be one of those overwhelming meats, its easy to get tough and dried out if you don't do it just right. The solution to dried out ham? The Crock Pot. I love crock pot cooking.. It's so simple... dump it all in, check on it every few hours and then at the end... magic.
I went a sweet, with a bit of heat route this year with my ham and it turned out incredible. Just putting the marinade (which I made separately the night before to give the flavors a chance to combine) in with the ham, when you place it in the slow cooker infuses the flavor as it slow cooks.
Sweet and Spicy Slow Cooker Ham..
Marinade: (measurements are approximate… honestly I eyeball things)
1 cup - apple juice
2 tablespoons - apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons - honey
3 tablespoons - maple syrup
¼ cup - brown sugar
2 Tablespoons - siracha garlic/chili sauce
½ Tablespoon - hot sauce – I used “Jump Up and Kiss Me”
½ tablespoon - crushed red pepper flakes.
Stir all that together and let it sit over night… taste and adjust seasoning, this only had a mild amount of heat. Just enough to add a touch of zip. If you like things with more kick, add more heat.
Get a good, local if possible, as natural as possible ½ Butt (about 6 pounds) In Montana I love RedNeck… they make awesome sausages, bacon, ham… all things porky goodness… In Seattle of love Skagit River Ranch. I love these companies because when I read the labels the ingredients are pretty basic... there's not a slough of additives and chemicals and preserves... its usually, ham, water, brown sugar, spices etc... all you need. Also places such as these just tend to treat their animals better and that's important.
About 8 hours before you want to eat your supper put the ham in your crock pot so the face is down… pour your marinade over it and cook on low for 6-9 hours… every couple of hours take a basting brush and brush the marinade over the pork. (Save that cooked marinade/juice! Its sweet and spicy and can be used in a variety of ways as dressing or sauce)
I cooked mine a total of 8 hours and it was perfect. Flavor and texture was awesome, my whole family raved about it. I'm making an awesome lentil soup today with some of the leftovers.
Served with my Beet Risotto and Roasted Asparagus and a Flourless Chocolate cake for dessert it was a hit.
About the Blog
I've been blogging on and off for years. This is my area to explore healing, food, wine, travel and various thoughts on life. My goal: Be True. Be Kind. Heal. Dream. Inspire. Discover. Create.