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roasted fresh ham with a maple-spice glaze

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leitesculinaria.com
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Prep Time: 15 minutes

Total: 5 hours

Servings: 10

Cost: $2.37 /serving

Ingredients

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Instructions

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Step 1

Fire the oven up to 325°F (160°C).

Step 2

Put the Dickensian joint in a large roasting pan, preferably one that’s shiny enough to reflect lots of ambient heat and not a flimsy disposable pan that tips willy-nilly when you pick it up. Leave the roast in the pan on the counter.

Step 3

Mix the sugar, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg, and salt in a small bowl. Wash and dry your hands and then use them to smooth the spice mixture all over the ham’s external surface, working it down into some of the crevices but being careful to avoid any deep-tissue massage. A ham is a complex structure of muscle groups—too much massage and everything can come apart like Goldie Hawn in Death Becomes Her.

Step 4

Cover the whole kit and caboodle with aluminum foil, slide it in the oven, and leave it alone for 3 1/2 hours while you go do whatever it is you do when a big, sweating hunk of meat is roasting in your oven. You want at least 2 inches of space between the top of your ham and the element at the top of. your oven.

Step 5

Peel off the aluminum foil. Baste the ham with about half the maple syrup, preferably using a basting brush. Take it easy so you don’t knock off the spice coating. Use small strokes—think Impressionism, not Abstract Expressionism. Or just dribble the syrup off a spoon.

Step 6

Continue roasting the ham, uncovered this time, basting every 15 minutes or so with more maple syrup as well as any pan drippings, until an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat without touching bone registers 170°F (77°C), about 1 1/4 hours more. If the ham starts to singe or turn too dark, tent it loosely with foil, uncovering it just at the last to get it back to crunchy-crisp.

Step 7

Transfer the ham to a cutting or carving board and let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes before carving into slices.

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