Gammon to Honey Roast Ham with Crackling

I love home cooked ham at Christmas and New Year. But I also dread cooking it mainly because I am not sure how to cook it. So this year I searched the net, both Danish and English, and was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was. All of the recipes agreed on the cooking time, and I opted for a version of half boiled and half roasting.
I had purchased a small raw gammon joint of 1.4kg and here is how I cooked it.
I wrote this in January 2017; but forgot to post it.
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Prep time 10 minutes Cooking time 20 minutes per 500g
plus 20 minutes
Serves 8 Rest Time 2x 10 minutes

For boiling:

  • 1.4kg gammon joint
  • 5 cloves
  • 3-4 bay leaves
  • 1-2 Onions, peeled and quartered
  • 1 tsp Pepper
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds

For oven:

  • Many cloves, enough to poke into each diamond
  • 1 tbsp Honey
  • 1 tbsp Mustard
  1. Place the gammon in a saucepan, cover with water add 5 cloves, bay leaves, onions, pepper and mustard seeds.
  2. Bring to boil, then lower the heat and let simmer for half the total cooking time.
  3. Remove from saucepan and let it rest for at least 10 minutes.
  4. Now remove the rind leaving as much as possible of the fat on the gammon.
  5. Crisscross the fat with a knife making a diamond pattern.
  6. Mix the honey and mustard, and spread it over the fat
  7. Then poke each diamond with a clove.
  8. Place in a 180°C oven for the remaining time. Keep an eye on the joint and cover with foil if it colours too much.
  9. Remove from oven and leave to rest for 10 minutes before serving hot.

Make the Crackling:

  1. Once the rind is removed slice it into bite size
  2. Place all the pieces on a shallow baking tray
  3. When finished place another tray on top to prevent the slices curling
  4. Place in the oven with the ham on a lower rack and bake for 10-20 minutes
  5. After 10 minutes remove the upper tray, and salt the cracklings, and bake for 10 more minutes or until cracklings are nicely browned.

PS. The best about the rind is; that it can be purchase from Morrison’s for 40-50p
Just pre-boil the rind (5-10 minutes). The time it takes to heat the oven.

Homemade Potato Wedges

I need something more for a dinner party and didn’t want to have just boiled potatoes, I thought of wedges and checked my freezer if I happen to have some frozen wedges; but alas I didn’t. Now that the thought was implanted in my head I looked around on the net and found that making and cooking wedges wasn’t that difficult; so here is what I did.

Prep time max 5 minutes unattended cooking (baking) time 35 minutes
Serves 2-4
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  • 2-3 potatoes per person, I used new small potatoes
  • 1 tsp each of Salt, Pepper, Onion-salt, Garlic-salt, fresh Thyme … and whatever you fancy like: ginger paprika, curry …
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil (or sunflower/rape seed)
  1. Pre-heat oven to 200ºC. Line a baking tray with foil (saves washing up).
  2. Cut the potatoes in half; then cut 3 wedges from each half. Place the wedges I a bow full of cold water for about 5 minutes.
  3. Put the oil in a small plastic bag; Drain and dry the wedges and place them in the bag. Close the bag with a peg so that it doesn’t leak. Then shake the bag making sure all the wedges are coated in oil.
  4. Place all your herbs in another plastic bag; and move the wedges into this bag; again close the bag and shake. Once all your herbs are used tip the wedges out into your baking tray, spread evenly and place in oven.
  5. Bake for 35 minutes – and that’s it. Serve and enjoy.

 

A healthy evening meal

This meal is nearly vegetarian; just remove the pork and you have a very nice dish. Its not too filling and it only takes 5-10 minutes to cook and serve.
evening-meal

  • 1 medium Carrot roughly julienned
  • 1 Pak Choi – cut into 1cm slices (except for the leaves)
  • 5 thinly cut slices of a pork chop
  • ½ onion, sliced finely
  • 1 tsp butter/rape seed oil
  • Herbs: salt, pepper, garlic-salt, mixed herbs
  • Heat the oil in a high sided frying pan
  • Fry the onions until translucent
  • Add the julienned carrots and fry for approx. 5 minutes
  • Then remove from pan; but leave the juices
  • Fry the pork adding the herbs to taste.
  • When the pork is sealed re-add the carrots and onions.
  • Also add the chopped Pak Choi and leaves, stir a little
  • Cover with lid and reduce the heat to minimum.
  • Leave simmering for 3-5 minutes; and then serve.

This meal is nearly vegetarian; just remove the pork and you have a very nice dish. Its not too filling and it only takes 5-10 minutes to cook and serve.

Fish Balls in Tomato Sauce

Serves 3-4
Total time 6 minutes Fiskeboller i tomatsovs
This is such an easy, quick and tasty dinner that I thought I would share it with my readers. All that’s required is that you have a tin of fishballs and chopped tomato.

  • 1 tin 400g Bornholms Fiskeboller
    (purchased online from Danish Food Direct)
  • 1 tin chopped Tomato
  • Herbs to taste – I used Salt and Pepper, Thyme and Parsley
  • 1st make the tomato sauce, simply empty tin into a saucepan and heat, once hot add the required herbs.
  • 2nd strain the fishballs and add to the tomato sauce.
  • Cover the saucepan with a lid and let the sauce simmer on lowest heat possible for max 5 minutes.
  • Serve on a bed of rice or as in the picture with rice noodles.

Rice Pudding

This rice pudding is also called “Ris a la Mande” or “Risalamande”; it is my variation of it.
The Rice Pudding should be made at least a day prior to eating.
risalamande
The Rice Pudding

  • 200g pudding rice
  • 600ml water
  • 400ml milk
  • 500ml whipping or double cream
  • 50g Chopped almonds
  • Vanilla extract or one pod (to taste)
  • Touch of salt and sugar (to taste)

On the day of serving:

  • 300ml Whipped whipping cream
  • 1 or 2 cans or jars of red cherries
  • Brandy or Kirsch
  • Potato flour

The Rice Pudding

  1. Bring the water with the salt and sugar to a boil; then gently add the rice to the boiling water.
  2. Simmer until the water has evaporated, then add the milk, cream and vanilla, and leave to simmer (on the lowest heat possible) for approximately ½ hour. NO stirring required.
    Keep an eye on it, you don’t want it to simmer dry,.
  3. Remove from heat and transfer into a bowl (remove the singed bottom carefully if the pudding has “burned” onto the saucepan).
  4. If too dry add the remaining 100ml cream left over from using only 500ml of whipping cream (a large tub normally comes in a 600ml size).
  5. Then stir in the almonds.
  6. Cover the bowl with cling film; set aside to cool; then keep it in the fridge until needed.

On the day of serving:

  1. When chilled, gently fold-in the 2nd lot of whipped cream
  2. Place in the fridge until needed

The Sauce

  1. Strain the tinned or jarred cherry juice into a saucepan.
  2. Add 25g potato flour per ½l cherry juice to a small amount of the cherry juice.
  3. Heat the remaining juice and slowly add the flour mixture to the warm juice, heat until it has thickened then return the cherries to the sauce.
    (maybe add some brandy or kirsch to the sauce).

 

1 rotisserie chicken – 7 different meals

Today I purchased one rotisserie chicken; which of course, for one person, is rather extravagant. I decided to dissect the chicken into: 1 portion of deboned chicken legs; 2 portions of skin-less chicken breast; scrape and cut all remains of chicken meat off the carcasses and bones, split this in 2 portions roughly ¼ and ¾; and finally place all the bones, skin and carcasses in a large saucepan for stock.

chicken

    For the stock (makes upto 4 portions):

  • the bones, skin and carcasse
  • 1.5-2 ltr water
  • 1-2 roughly cut onions,
  • 2-4 chopped carrots,
  • 1-2 potato roughly cut
  • Herbs to taste
  • 200g green/mixed lentils
  • Let it simmer gently for 1-2 hours.
  • What I also did was hang a strainer into the pot/stock placing the lentils in the strainer; thus still part of the stock but without them getting mixed into the stock
  • Drain the stock; then add the lentils and set aside to cool.
  • Portion into 4 small containers; freeze when cool enough

As I had a portion of Bombay cooked lentils I use the ¾ chicken bits and mixed it to the lentils, added some spices, and had my lunch.

The ¼ portion of chicken meat went into a chicken mayo, spiced with garlic and chilli powder and a drop of lemon, ready for spreading tomorrow.

The 2 portions of chicken breast went straight into a small freezer bags each, and when they are cold enough, place them in my freezer.

Now – I ask – am I still extravagant? No, I think not. For £4 for the chicken & £1 for the vegetables getting food for 5-7 people depending what I do with the chicken breasts; not bad if I say so myself.

Deep Fried Rabbit

I was experimenting and mixing a couple of recipes and came up with this one. I am not a great lover of deep frying but this is worth it. You don’t need a deep-fryer all you need is a steel/iron saucepan and 1 ltr of rapeseed oil. I must admit it’s the first time that I have cooked rabbit; but not the last. I was pleasantly surprised with the result, even though it wasn’t quite successful. The batter was a bit thin & runny; thus it fell off the rabbit. Never the less it was fun and a very nice result; for all it was relatively quick produced. I changed the recipe to be coated in egg and bread crumbs. I went to the butcher who stocks game and asked for a cleaned and jointed rabbit. The pieces he had were too big so he cut the saddle in half and separated the legs. I ended up with 8 pieces and it wasn’t OTT expensive.
DeepFriedRabbit

  • 1 ltr rapeseed oil
  • 50g Parmesan, finely grated
  • 2 x 50g sachets panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 wild rabbit, jointed and each leg also
    jointed into a drumstick and thigh
  • Lemon wedges, to serve
  • Heat oven to 160°C/140°C fan and have ready a large baking tray with a wire rack placed over it.
  • Heat the oil in a large, deep saucepan (or use a deep-fat fryer) until the oil reaches 140°C. Depending on the size of your pan you will be frying 3-4 pieces at a time; hence the hot oven. So fry the biggest pieces first.
  • Meanwhile dry each piece of rabbit.
  • Beat the eggs in a plate/soup plate (I like to add some herbs to the egg – e.g. salt, pepper and maybe some thyme).
  • Mix the Parmesan and breadcrumbs on another plate
  • Dunk each piece of rabbit in the beaten egg, lift out with a fork
  • And coat in the bread crumbs.
  • Repeat with a couple more pieces.
  • Lower into the fat and fry for about 9 mins for smaller, 12 mins for larger pieces (11 mins if resting in oven), until deep golden and cooked through. Don’t overcrowd the pan.
  • Lift out with a slotted spoon and drain on the rack in the oven while you do the next batch. Never leave the pan unattended.

Serve the rabbit with a sprinkling of flaky salt and plenty of lemon wedges.
You can also add small bowls with mayonnaise and/or tartar sauce and/or sweet chilli sauce for dipping.