Warning: this delicious glazed gammon could prove even more popular than the turkey at your Christmas dinner table
- 2-2.5kg (4-5lb) boned and rolled smoked gammon
- 1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
- 2 carrots, scrubbed and roughly chopped
- For the topping:
- A few cloves, optional
- 3-4 tbsp cranberry sauce
- 2 level tbsp Demerara sugar
- 1tbsp white wine vinegar
Soak the gammon joint in cold water overnight, then drain it, discarding the water. Weigh the gammon to calculate the cooking time – it will take 25 mins per 500g, plus 20 mins (so a 2kg joint will take 2 hours).
Place the gammon in a large saucepan and add the bay leaves, onion, celery and carrots to the pan, then cover the gammon with cold water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and cover the pan. Start the timing from the moment the gammon comes to the boil. Simmer the gammon for the calculated time.
Remove pan from the heat and carefully lift out the gammon, reserving cooking liquor. Remove the string. Cut the skin off the gammon, leaving just a thin layer of fat. Score through the fat in a diamond pattern using a small, sharp knife. Press cloves, if using, into the fat and the gammon.
Mix together the cranberry sauce, Demerara sugar and vinegar. Spread mixture over the top of gammon. Place gammon in a roasting tin and spoon some of the cooking liquor around it.
Set the oven to 190°C (375°F, gas mark 5). Bake the gammon in the centre of the oven for about 20-30 mins, or until the topping is bubbling and has started to crisp. Remove it from the oven, transfer to a warmed serving plate and keep it warm until serving.
Cooking the ham on the hob first allows you time to roast the turkey - then the ham can go into the oven while the turkey is 'resting'.