Recipe: Pressed Ham
Feeding a hungry family can be an expensive occupation, and reducing your waste is important if you want to make the most of your cash. This pressed ham is perfect for salads and sandwiches, and is a perfect way to stretch your budget without shrinking your taste buds. The cost of a boiling joint in the UK is roughly £2 , and a single joint has enough meat on it to make sandwiches for about 8 people. With some home grown salad and pickles, that’s a complete meal for less than £1 per plate.
- Ham Hock
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg (optional)
Boil the ham until the meat is tender enough to pull away from the bone. A pressure cooker is ideal for this, and will cut the cooking time down to about 1 hour. Otherwise, just leave the ham boiling away on the stove until it is tender.
Remove the ham from the water while it is still warm, and separate the meat from the bone and gristle. You can use a fork or knife to help you do this, but it is much easier to let your hands do the work.
- If you are adding any herbs or spices, mix them with the meat while it is still warm. I occasionally use nutmeg to spice the meat, but the ham is tasty enough to stand up for itself without any extra seasoning.
If you have a meat press, load the meat into it, and apply pressure until you see the liquor rise to the top of the bowl.
- If you don’t have a meat press, just load the meat into a bowl, and put a saucer on top of the meat. The saucer should be slightly smaller than the bowl, so that it can press down onto the meat. Add weight (tins of food, weights from your scales, or even a bowl of water will do) to the top of the saucer until you see liquor rise to the top.
Let the pressed meat cool, and then place into the refrigerator overnight. Turn out onto a plate and slice when ready.