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Christmas ham recipe

Christmas ham recipe

316 ratings

Give this traditional Christmas ham recipe a go – simmered in bay-infused cider and roasted with a mustard and demerara glaze, it makes for a magnificent festive centrepiece. You can make this recipe up to 2 days in advance, to the point where you score the skin. Then chill until ready to glaze. See method

  • Serves 8
  • 30 mins to prepare and 1 hr 30 mins to cook, 10 mins to cool
  • 350 calories / serving


  • 1.5kg unsmoked gammon joint
  • 2litres (3pt) dry cider
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 sticks celery, chopped
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 1tbsp whole cloves
  • 1tbsp English mustard powder
  • 2tbsp demerara sugar

Each serving contains

  • Energy

  • Fat

    19g 27%
  • Saturates

    6g 31%
  • Sugars

    5g 6%
  • Salt

    4.6g 77%

of the reference intake
Carbohydrate 8g Protein 36g Fibre 0.2g


  1. Put the gammon into a large pan and pour over the cider. Add the carrot, onion, bay leaves, celery and peppercorns. Bring to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 1 hr. Drain, saving the cooking liquor as stock for another dish (see tips below), and discard the veg. Leave to cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Once the gammon has cooled slightly, use a small sharp knife to remove the skin, making sure you leave a 1cm (½in) thick layer of fat all over the top. Score the fat into diamond shapes and press a cloveinto the middle of each diamond.
  3. Mix the mustard powder and sugar together with ½-1 tbsp hot water to make a thick paste, cool a little and then spread over the top of the joint.
  4. Place the gammon on a rack in a roasting tin lined with foil. Pour a small ladleful of the cooking liquor into the base of the tin (this stops the meat drying out) and bake in the oven for 25-30 mins or until it is a rich, golden colour on top. Baste once or twice with the juices in the base of the tin during cooking. Remove from the oven and rest for 10 mins before serving thinly sliced.

See more Ham recipes

For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.

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