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"This ham is delicious served hot or warm, as well as cold in sandwiches. It is a great dish to make ahead for company. Although this type of ham comes 'fully cooked and ready to eat,' it improves considerably when poached in water, which removes some of the salt and makes the meat moist, tender and succulent. It is best if you poach the ham a day ahead, then bake it before serving."


  • 1 bone-in, cured smoked ham from the shank end (about 6 pounds), with rind
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup, pure
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons chili sauce, hot, such as Sriracha
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


Serves: 8 servings


Put the ham in a large pot, cover with hot water and bring the water to 170-180°F (which will take about 40 minutes). Cook, uncovered, for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the internal temperature is about 140°F. Let the ham rest in the water until the water is lukewarm, then remove it from the water and refrigerate. (This is best done the day before.)

When ready to finish the dish, preheat the oven to 400°F.

Trim the leathery skin from around and underneath the ham with a sharp knife, but leave the rind on. Put the trimmed ham in a roasting pan. Mix together the maple syrup, ketchup, chili sauce and vinegar in a bowl and brush the ham generously with the sauce.

Bake for 45 minutes. Brush again with the sauce and continue cooking for 15-20 minutes longer. Brush the ham with any remaining sauce, slice, and serve.

Adapted from "Heart & Soul in the Kitchen" by Jacques Pepin. Copyright © 2015 by Jacques Pepin. Used with permission by Rux Martin/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

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