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I bought a whole old style air cured Country Ham. It was cured for 9 months with only salt and brown sugar (no nitrites/nitrates). I know Country Ham can be really salty so I want to figure out how to cook it so it's not overly salty and also such that I can save small portions for seasoning (e.g., in green beans, soups, etc). Any ideas?

asked by CaryNC about 4 years ago
6 answers 1616 views
65158_10200930358201562_954577392_n
added about 4 years ago

The first time I tried country ham, I puckered...so salty I couldn't figure out what the deal was! Then I learned that you need to soak it, which went against all prior wisdom (soak meat?!). But it's true. Once you leach some of that salt out and prepare the ham, the flavor will be exactly as you had in mind; rich, sweet with beautiful nuances of flavor. I ran across this tutorial that may help you:
http://tinyurl.com/266427a...
And if you just want to get all excited about your ham, Salon put out a great article on the subject that had me salivating ; )
http://tinyurl.com/35zu355...

Desert
added about 4 years ago

Foodshed Foodshed go away, We don't like business's here anyway, come back as a person some other day, this is a food forum not a way, to promote your business here today.

1390710_10151917400148928_1193325941_n_1_
added about 4 years ago

Try using the ham instead of salt! Mince it or small dice it up into cubes and freeze them for when you need them. I don't eat a lot of country ham, but when I do buy I buy it a similar size as you describe. The saltiness is an inherent problem, but as long as you use it as a replacement to salting things, maybe adjusting seasoning later, you'll be okay!

Kay_at_lake
added about 4 years ago

I have really good results soaking my country ham in a 50-50 mixture of apple juice and water. 24 hours in the fridge, changing the soaking liquid once or twice, usually works well.

Default-small
added about 4 years ago

I thought I would soak it (15lb whole ham) in water for 2 days with several water changes. But I think I will do a 50/50 mix of water/apple juice for the last soak or two per "Kayb" which should remove some saltiness and add some sweetness. I was also told to consider baking it with a 2 litter of Dr. Pepper or apple juice in the pan. I may have to buy a vacuum sealer so I can portion it out and freeze the left overs for later use. Thanks!!

Kay_at_lake
added about 4 years ago

If you're going to portion it, if it's feasible, I'd soak only the portion I was going to cook fairly soon. The salt cure will just keep the remainder in its original condition, and you can soak it when you get ready.