It use to not be like that. Early in the marriage, we had your traditional turkey dinner on Thanksgiving, with stuffing and all the other stuff. But one year, maybe back around 2007 or so, my middle boy, who was no more than 3 or 4 at the time, loudly proclaimed a week before Thanksgiving, “I wanna eat ham for Thanksgiving. I don’t like turkey.” My wife thought that was precious and opted to make ham for this one time. We liked it so much, the “tradition” stuck.
As I understand it, there are other Thanksgiving ham people out there in America. During my first year of seminary, my roommate began talking about his desire for turkey about the last week of October. Any time the discussion about where we were going to eat Thanksgiving for that year came up, he threw in his “oh man, I can’t wait to eat turkey” speech.
Thanksgiving Day came and that night my roommate returned to our apartment crestfallen. Apparently, the seminary family that had invited him to eat with them were “ham only” people. They had a nice big roasted ham, but no turkey. My roommate tells me that when the husband brought out the big ham platter, he exclaimed out loud to the entire company gathered at the table, “Awesome, we’re having ham, too!” Awkward glances were exchanged and the husband had to break his heart by telling him they only had a ham. That story still makes me chuckle.
Any how, since we switched to a ham Thanksgiving (and Easter), my wife and I try to find fun recipes to make the best ham glaze. This year we found a good one I would recommend. It’s located over at the Deep South Dish website. A fabulous brown-sugar mustard glaze with a Coke pan sauce.
If you read through it, (it’s longish, but informative for you ham bakers) there are variations on the glaze after the instructions. I tried the last one, the brown sugar and cane syrup version. As they say in texting talk, OMG. It was so good. Like weepy good.
The instructions are rather self explanatory. Just keep in mind that they are for a 6-8 pound ham. I had a 15 pound ham I was making for a large party of folks, so doubling everything gave me sufficient amounts of glaze to smother over it. Also, other soda can be substituted for Coke. Like for example root beer or if you want to be really Southern, R.C. Cola.
One thing I will do differently is maybe switch the mustard from French’s yellow mustard to either Dijon or some honey mustard. The mustard gave a nice taste, but I’d like it less like a hot dog, if you know what I mean. Also, don’t score the ham too deeply. I over did mine. It wasn’t ruined, but a properly scored ham makes for a nicer presentation.
If you have any of your ham glaze recipes, leave them in the comments, please. I’d love to try them.