Sunday, March 17, 2013

Dick Casper's Orange Cranberry Glazed Ham

My broadcasting career started in radio and I worked in Miami and Nashville for about 3 years.  The General Manager at the Nashville stations was a “larger than life” guy named Dick Casper, and he was quite a cook.  

At a holiday party he threw for the WLAC and WJYN staff at his home, Dick cooked the most delicious country ham I have ever tasted, which I thought was odd because he was Jewish.  I asked Dick about this and his reply is a quote that I have remembered for over 30 years.  He said “Only a Jew can cook a ham properly, because you have to respect it !”  What more needs to be said?  Now what made this ham special was the Orange Cranberry glaze that Dick used on it.  He wrote the recipe on a napkin for me that I still have today.  This glaze is absolutely delicious and relatively easy to make!  If you use a country ham, you will need to soak it for a few days to lower the salt content that was used in the curing process.  If you buy a prepared spiral cut ham, you can add to or re-glaze the ham.  Either way, you will be in for quite the treat!

1 country ham, skin on
whole cloves (to insert in the ham after scoring)
Orange Cranberry Glaze (recipe follows)

For the glaze:1 14oz jar cranberry relish
½ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
Zest of one orange
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground clove
1/8 tsp salt
1 Tbs arrowroot


Combine all the glaze ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Add 1 Tbs arrowroot dissolved in water to thicken the glaze.  Cook the ham with the skin on 1-1/2 hours at 325 degrees.  Remove from the oven and cut off the skin and fat, leaving ¼ to ½ in of the fat.  Score the fat at 1 inch intervals and stick a whole clove at each intersection. Baste with 1/3 of the sauce and return to the oven for 20 minutes.  Baste the ham with another 1/3 of the glaze and cook 20 minutes.  Baste with the remaining glaze and cook the final 20 minutes.  Let cook, carve and serve.

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