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    Post #1 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:25 pm
    Post #1 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:25 pm Post #1 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:25 pm
    I am thinking of adding ham to the Christmas Brunch offering this year. The problem is I am not a huge ham fan, mostly I am guessing, because the brunch hams I have had have mostly been the cheap, spiral-sliced jobbers. I mean I love proscuittto, speck, serrano, and almost any real crafted/aged ham I have had. I also love smoked pork, and have a well-worn WSM and the added girth from several rounds of GWiv's 5 lessons to prove it.

    Can I get a good country style ham in Chicago? If so will it cost me too much to offer it to my spiral-slice loving family? And if I get through both of those questions. . . How should I prepare it?

    OR, would it make sense to buy a really good "city" ham and put it on the smoker to heat. If so what is the best place to pick up a city ham in the Chicago area?

    Thanks in advance,

    Ham Rookie
    Today I caught that fish again, that lovely silver prince of fishes,
    And once again he offered me, if I would only set him free—
    Any one of a number of wonderful wishes... He was delicious! - Shel Silverstein
  • Post #2 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:34 pm
    Post #2 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:34 pm Post #2 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:34 pm
    I just saw a mention - not sure where but it was this AM - that the team at Old Toan Social are curing Christmas Hams - you might want to check with them?

    Sorry for lack of precise info - home with stunning bad cold
  • Post #3 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:47 pm
    Post #3 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:47 pm Post #3 - December 3rd, 2010, 4:47 pm
    Like you, Ham was never in my repertoire. Last year the chow poodle wanted a Ham so I faced the same situation as you. I ended up getting a spiral sliced Ham from Paulina. It was the best of both worlds. It had the familiar spiral cut, so no one got scared that it was some kind of Jewish Ham but it tasted great. I got a plain one and made my own glaze, but they offer honey glazed and a couple of other flavors as well.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #4 - December 3rd, 2010, 5:47 pm
    Post #4 - December 3rd, 2010, 5:47 pm Post #4 - December 3rd, 2010, 5:47 pm
    MelT wrote:Can I get a good country style ham in Chicago? If so will it cost me too much to offer it to my spiral-slice loving family? And if I get through both of those questions. . . How should I prepare it?


    There are a few threads here on country hams. Here are two:

    http://www.lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?p=12508

    viewtopic.php?p=295718#p295718

    Regarding price, last year I investigated this and found:

    Paulina Meat Market has country hams. They are $8/lb and weight about 12 lbs (if I recall). They usually have them in stock, but I'm told that they will likely run out before Christmas.

    Paulina Meat Market
    https://www.paulinameatmarket.com/
    773.248.6272
    3501 N. Lincoln Avenue (corner of Lincoln & Cornelia)
    Chicago, IL 6065
  • Post #5 - December 3rd, 2010, 6:49 pm
    Post #5 - December 3rd, 2010, 6:49 pm Post #5 - December 3rd, 2010, 6:49 pm
    Paulina Meat Market has country hams. They are $8/lb and weight about 12 lbs (if I recall). They usually have them in stock, but I'm told that they will likely run out before Christmas.

    Paulina Meat Market
    https://www.paulinameatmarket.com/
    773.248.6272
    3501 N. Lincoln Avenue (corner of Lincoln & Cornelia)
    Chicago, IL 6065
    [/quote]

    Just to clarify, Paulina does have country hams, but hte one I was refering to was a standard city spiral cut ham.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #6 - December 3rd, 2010, 8:24 pm
    Post #6 - December 3rd, 2010, 8:24 pm Post #6 - December 3rd, 2010, 8:24 pm
    I made a smoked shank ham with an orange mustard glaze for Thanksgiving and got rave reviews.The ham was 18lbs and I cooked it for 7hrs @ 260deg.The internal temp was 150deg.
    This was my second ham I bought from Sorg Farm Packing in Darien,Wisc.Located on Hwy 89 about 1.5 hrs from Chicago.The cost was $2.45 per lb. These people have had some of the best meat products in the Geneva Lakes area with steaks to die for !!
  • Post #7 - December 4th, 2010, 4:39 am
    Post #7 - December 4th, 2010, 4:39 am Post #7 - December 4th, 2010, 4:39 am
    THE best city ham is a Nueske. It is apple wood smoked, so all you have to do is heat and I guarantee everyone will rave. Purchase locally or order over the net, they usually have free shipping or free bacon (World's Best) at this time of year.
    A country ham is a LOT more work for a buffet but can be purchased cooked and boneless from a source such as Scott's Hams but the taste is not to everyone's liking. Our country hams only come from Scott's in Kentucky.-Dick
  • Post #8 - December 4th, 2010, 9:15 am
    Post #8 - December 4th, 2010, 9:15 am Post #8 - December 4th, 2010, 9:15 am
    Reams in Elburn has really good "old fashioned" hams, which they will spiral cut for you.
  • Post #9 - December 6th, 2010, 10:41 am
    Post #9 - December 6th, 2010, 10:41 am Post #9 - December 6th, 2010, 10:41 am
    I also get Scott Hams through the interwebs. For whole ham prep, there are three steps - soak, boil and bake. First cut off any mold or dirt (I rarely find any). Soaking in water for at least overnight, but up to three days, with several changes of water will remove some of the saltiness. Then bring to a boil in water, apple cider, Dr. Pepper, RC Cola, or something else, preferably on the sweet side. Once it boils, reduce to a low simmer and let it go 2 - 3 hours. Let cool, then cut off most of the skin and fat, leaving a layer of fat. If you like, you can cut a crosshatch pattern in the fat, to make it purtier. Preheat oven to 375° If you want to make a glaze, apply it now and tent with foil (no foil needed if unglazed). Bake to an internal temp of 155°, pulling off the foil (if used) about 15 minutes before it's done to brown the glaze. Let rest, then slice thinly (I use an electric knife).
  • Post #10 - December 7th, 2010, 3:19 am
    Post #10 - December 7th, 2010, 3:19 am Post #10 - December 7th, 2010, 3:19 am
    If your family isn't used to country ham, they may well find it too intense and salty.

    Sometimes it's not the ham itself so much as as what you do with it that matters. An inexpensive ham can become something marvelous. This ham, for example, started out as a relatively low-cost one from Peoria Packing (but at this time of year you can likely find similar ones all over the place).
  • Post #11 - December 7th, 2010, 5:10 pm
    Post #11 - December 7th, 2010, 5:10 pm Post #11 - December 7th, 2010, 5:10 pm
    Here's a good story that was in Garden and Gun Magazine Dec. 2010/Jan. 2011 on country hams

    http://virginiatraditions.com/assets/ne ... ec2010.pdf
  • Post #12 - December 7th, 2010, 11:03 pm
    Post #12 - December 7th, 2010, 11:03 pm Post #12 - December 7th, 2010, 11:03 pm
    Make mine Smithfield or Gwaltney.

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