Milk Ham is not meant to be anything of elegance. It’s merely feeding the soul, nourishing the belly, antiquating the resourcefulness of the day; survival.
Surprisingly, few have ever heard of milk ham. We keep updating recipes and ideas of eating, the many different ways. Food has a history of its own, too, like anything else.
It is known that on plantations in slavery days, baking meat in milk kept the ham tender and drew out the excessive salt.
Flour, powdered mustard, and dark brown sugar are usually the only ingredients used for a meat rub before baking a milk ham. I’m using for my spices, Cajun seasoning, sweet Hungarian paprika, and Colman’s Mustard.
Sticking to tradition, I’ll include a couple tablespoons flour.
I find onions to be essential in almost everything cooked.
I’ll put in three yellow onions, and sip on a glass of eggnog.
Going for a nutty flavor in the butter, I’m going to brown it before tossing in the onions.
Baking and cooking is whatever you feel like doing, whatever you want to do, and just however way you decide… It’s your own mindset and desire.
I want to cut and slice the onions just any which way!
Trying something totally different, I want to stir this into the onions after they’re browned a bit. I like the quality of basil-garlic content in this particular pesto.
Not quite ready for the pesto…
But I do want my crushed red pepper flakes at this very second.
Now the basil pesto…
Got to turn down the temp so the onions don’t overcook.
I adore my induction burner. I highly suggest you getting one. Easy cleanup, very nice to have.
Being that it’s the holiday time of year, I want a true coconut flavor and pineapple in the ham juices, along with the milk when it cooks.
I’m putting all of this into the onions for the ham-bake. This is a good brand, a marvelous company of Mexican staple-goods–family-owned and-operated since the 1920s. The company is based in Chicago, IL.
The natural glossy coconut will bake a sweet flavor into the ham, complimenting the pineapple.
I think for baking/roasting a ham, it’s best to have fresh pineapple instead of pineapple from a can. It’s my preference, anyway. Sure, it’s more of a task cutting one up, but it’s so worth it.
For sharpness, plus to even out the sweetness for a balance, I’m adding red balsamic vinegar.
And cognac–of course–it’s “the holidays”.
For ease and tenderness, I have a spiral-cut ham.
Being careful to save the ham juice…
I’m going to add all of it to the pan of onions and pesto with coconut liquid.
I’m “guesstimating” amounts of spices and flour for the ham rub, and I’ll allow it to rest for 15 minutes before baking.
A drizzle of 100% maple syrup infused with cinnamon…
Now it’s time to let it set for 15 minutes before the oven’s heat hits it.
The coconut can holds 2 cups liquid. That’s 2 cups coconut water, 1 1/2 coconut-cans [3 cups] ham juice added from the package; and now, 1 cup milk poured into the coconut can to fill up the equivalence of ham juice to make a total of 6 cups liquid into the ham pot before it goes into the oven. Normally, you would have 4 to 6 cups whole milk, nothing else… no ham liquid added, no coconut water, absolutely nothing but milk and the rub that’s on the meat.
Putting more cognac over the meat before it goes into the oven that is set at 350 degrees.
After baking the ham in the liquid for 1 1/2 hours, I’ve basted the meat with the juices, and I’ve turned up the oven to 500 degrees for the next 30 minutes… I know–I’m making it all into a dilemma, into an “absurdity”!
I’m going to be even more ridiculous to pour heavy whipping cream all over the meat before putting it back into the oven. I get a proud “A” for stubbornness.
Typically, the milk would thicken up and cook down, the rest of the milk left to discard when the meat has finished cooking.
Enjoy a break; the ham will cook 2 to 3 hours, depending on the size ham…
Usually, I spike my eggnog, and I also sprinkle a good-quality nutmeg over the top.
Now the ham is ready, still in its liquids, but it’s tender and crusty-brown.
What’s left of the juices can be saved for a soup-base. I’ll strain it and discard the pineapple and onion pieces from the liquid before using it for another meal.