Christmas + ham. It's pretty much a given, right?
Every year, on Christmas Eve, my grandma cooks up a delicious ham. I think it's the only time of year that I ever even eat ham! But it's always so good.
When I had the opportunity to prepare and taste-test a Chief Spiral Sliced Ham
this week, I was all sorts of excited. It's like Christmas came 3 weeks early!
I consulted my latest Rachael Ray magazine and decided to make a Cherry-and-Chili glaze for the ham. The sweet and savory glaze is added in the last few minutes of baking to add that extra bit of flavor to the outside. (The crispy edges might have just been my favorite part.)
After smelling the ham for 2 hours, it was finally time to dig in! The ham was sweet, smoky, and perfectly tender. It would make a wonderful centerpiece for a special occasion meal. (Or ya know, a random Tuesday night in December, how we enjoyed it.)
The best part - it's not intimidating at all! Nothing like its holiday cousin, the roasted turkey. :)
Simply remove the ham from its packaging and place in a roasting pan! It's already fully-cooked, so you're basically heating it up and adding the glaze.
Bake in a 250*F oven for about 2 hours. While it's baking prepare the glaze. You should have plenty of time. ;)
Combine 1/2 cup cherry preserves with some brown sugar, chili powder, dijon mustard, ginger, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Bring it to a simmer to dissolve the sugar, and then it's ready!
After the ham has baked for 2 hours, increase the oven to 400*F and pour about half the glaze over the ham. Let it roast about 12-15 minutes, until hot and sizzling. That's it! Serve it up with the remaining cherry-and-chili glaze.
You can be really gourmet, and serve it up with some box mac & cheese like I did... hehe. It would go wonderfully with all the typical holiday sides, as well.
And the best part - LEFTOVERS! Nothing is better than a ham & cheese sandwich with leftover Christmas ham. I've got a great little appetizer you can prepare with the leftover ham - Oven-Baked Ham & Cheese Sliders
, mini ham & cheese sandwiches baked in a tasty buttery-poppy seed sauce.
Take some good quality butter rolls, leftover ham, cheese, and your favorite sandwich spread. Assemble as many little sandwiches as you want.
For the sauce, melt some butter, and add in Worcestershire sauce, minced onion flakes, poppy seeds, and dijon mustard (if desired). Pour it all over the sandwiches, cover with foil and bake in a 350*F oven until the cheese melts. Remove the foil and let them crisp up for a few minutes, and serve.
These little sandwiches may be small, but they're completely irresistible! Definitely give them a try if you've got some leftover ham.
Cherry-and-Chili Glazed Ham
- 1 Chief fully cooked spiral-sliced ham, (8 lbs.)
- ½ cup cherry preserves
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- pinch cayenne pepper
- salt & pepper, to taste
Preheat to 250*F. Place ham in roasting pan and cover with foil. Roast for 2 hours.
Meanwhile, combine preserves, brown sugar, mustard, chili powder, ginger, salt, & pepper in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer, stirring, to dissolve the sugar.
Remove foil from ham and brush with about half of the glaze. Increase the oven temperature to 400*F and roast about 12-15 more minutes, until surface is dark brown and sizzling.
Let rest 10 minutes before serving. Serve with remaining glaze.
adapted from Rachael Ray
Ham & Cheese Sliders
- For the sliders
- 24 butter rolls
- sliced roasted ham
- 24 small slices swiss cheese
- mustard & mayo, if desired
- For the sauce
- ½ cup butter
- 1½ tablespoons dijon mustard, (can be omitted)
- 1 tablespoon minced onion
- ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
Preheat oven to 350*F. Assemble sandwiches as desired, and place in a baking dish, very close together.
For sauce, melt butter, and add mustard, minced onion, Worcestershire sauce, and poppy seeds. Pour sauce evenly over sandwiches. Cover with foil.
Bake at 350*F for 12-15 minutes until cheese is melted. Uncover and bake an additional 2-3 minutes until tops are slightly brown and crispy. Serve warm.
: The Girl Who Ate Everything