>Our family is deeply divided when it comes to Easter. We all look forward celebrating Easter, but we just look forward to different aspects of the day. For the kids, it’s all about the eggs: the hunt and the chocolate and candy free for all that follows it. When I look at their big smiles, their glazed over sugar coma eyes, and their messy chocolate mustaches, I can almost forgive them for waking me up at 5:30. This is the stuff of childhood memories. But as much as we like to stuff the eggs, hide the eggs, and then steal candy from our kids, for my husband and I, Easter is all about the spiral ham.
In previous years, I’ve tried to talk Steve into varying our menu. I’ve suggested rack of lamb, or garlic studded leg of lamb on the grill, even baby quail, but he won’t even consider skipping his yearly ham, he loves those thick, pink, meaty slices too much. This is a marital battle I don’t mind losing, because I love the ham leftovers. I can make a week’s worth of lunches and dinners from the remains of our Easter dinner without getting bored. Spiral ham is so rich and its texture is so forgiving that it makes a wonderful base for:
- Pastas (pic to be added tonight once our pasta is cooked!)
- Blow your family away with a sweet and savory apple pie
- scrambled eggs
- stuffed tomatoes
- Grilled Cheese
- and even tacos
I had grandiose plans to cook the ham from scratch this Easter instead of reheating a pre-cooked version, but between the Passover holidays and my ob appointments, I ran out of time. Instead I settled for buying a nitrate-free, organic, free-range ham from Whole Foods and throwing that little dried out flavoring packet. We concocted our own basting liquid instead and combined it with fresh pineapple. The ham was even tastier than in years past, and tonight the fun of leftovers begins.
Pineapple Bourbon Spiral Ham
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 90 minutes
1 fresh pineapple
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of Bourbon
2 tablespoons of maple syrup
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
2 tablespoons of ground mustard
1/4 cup of soy sauce
salt and pepper to your liking
- Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Peel and core your pineapple and cut it up into 1 inch chunks. Take half the chunks and puree them in a food processor. Put the other half of the pineapple chunks in a bowl and set aside.
- Add the remaining spices and ingredients to the food processor, just to make sure you don’t forget any (as I’ve been known to with catch-all instructions like this one), I’ll list them here: brown sugar, Bourbon, maple syrup, garlic powder, cinnamon, ground mustard, soy sauce, and salt and pepper. Pulse two or three times to mix. The liquid will now be frothy and will smell a little boozy.
- Place the spiced pineapple liquid in a small saucepan and cook on low-medium flame until it begins to simmer. Stir frequently. Continue cooking for 2-3 minutes, just to blend the flavors together well and boil away a little of the alcohol.
- Place the spiral ham in a large oven-proof casserole dish. Arrange the leftover pineapple chunks alongside. Pour a third of the pineapple liquid on top of the ham, using a spoon to drizzle some liquid over most of the ham.
- Cover with foil and heat for an hour.
- Turn the oven up to 400 degrees. Remove the foil and pour the remaining glaze on top of the ham. Cook for another 30 minutes to get the top of the ham nice and brown.
- When serving, feel free to cut the ham in a criss-cross pattern. We chose not to.