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Monte's Ham

Source: Saveur Cooks
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Rating: 5   Reviews: 4 See Reviews
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Active Time:  10 Minutes
Total Time:  4 Hours 10 Minutes
  Serves 20-30
Italian Prosciutto can cost $20 to $25 a pound; if Spain's legendary jabugo ham ever reaches these shores, it'll probably run at least twice that. Monte Mathews reports that he's never paid more than 99 cents a pound for a ham to use for this unfailingly popular party dish.
For the Ham:
1 15 pound smoked ham, on the bone
For the Glaze:
1 1/2 cups orange marmalade
1 cup dijon mustard
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 rounded tablespoon whole cloves
Monte's Ham Recipe at
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Trim tough outer skin and excess fat from ham. Put ham in a large roasting pan and score, making crosshatch incisions all over it with a sharp knife. Roast for 2 hours. Remove ham from oven and increase heat to 350 degrees.

Combine orange marmalade, mustard, and brown sugar in a medium bowl. Stud ham with cloves, inserting one at the intersection of each crosshatch, then brush entire surface of ham generously with glaze and return to oven.

Cook ham another 1 1/2 hours, brushing with glaze at least 3 times. Transfer to a cutting board or platter and allow to rest for about 30 minutes. Carve and serve warm or at room temperature.


"When I first moved to New York City," advertising copywriter Monte Mathews told us, "a friend gave me two pieces of advice: First, if you wear an expensive watch, you can wear anything else you want; second, when you have a lot of people over, buy a cheap ham. I already had the watch, but the cheap-ham tip threw me, and my friend did not elaborate. Not long afterward, at one of my first big-city parties, what should I see center-stage on the buffet table but a giant ham, bone intact, brown as could be. And what a ham! The mingled flavors of brown sugar and orange permeated every bite, and there was a faint hint of spice in the aftertaste. Guests hovered over it, and as the evening wore on, it became unrecognizable--thoroughly picked over. My hostess, flush with the triumph of having entertained so well, was effervescent, and I, feeling particularly close to her that night, offered to stay behind and help clean up. As she washed and I dried, I begged, 'Please talk to me about your ham.' Almost conspiratorially, she instructed me to buy the cheapest ham I could find, glaze the hell out of it, and cook it for a long time. 'You can feed 30 people for $6.99!' she exclaimed. I admit that I've never been able to find a bargain quite like that--but 20 years later, I still swear by cheap ham and a great glaze. I trot one out several times a year, and it's always the hit of the party."

Recipe reprinted by permission of Chronicle. All rights reserved.
Date Added: 01/01/2008
Part of These Recipe Collections Find Similar Recipes »
 Ham for the Holiday
Nutrition Facts per Serving
Yield:   Serves 20-30
Calories: 420
Fat. Total: 13g
Protein: 48g
Carbohydrates, Total: 26g
Sodium: 2413mg
% Cal. from Fat: 28%
Cholesterol: 120mg
Spotlight Recipe Review See all 4 reviews »

Rating: 5
by: Nicole Reviewed: 09/16/2008
By far the best ham ever!!!!!!!!!
I have made this ham every year for the last eight years and it is a hit every time. I like to glaze my ham four or five times until the flavors permeate every inch of the ham and the outside is dark and delicious. You may want to make two since there isn't much left over after everyone has picked it over throughout the course of the evening!
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