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Glazed Ham 101

Martha Stewart Living, April 1996

1. Rinse ham under cool running water. Pat dry, and place on a rack, rind side up, set in a roasting pan lined with aluminum foil. Pour 1/2 cup bourbon or cider over ham, and bake in a 350 degrees oven for 2 hours. Prepare the glaze while ham is baking.

2. When ham is cool enough to handle, cut off the hard rind, using kitchen shears or a sharp knife.

3. With a sharp knife, slice off most of the fat, leaving a 1/4-inch-thick layer covering the meat; the trimming does not need to be even all over.

4. Score fat on top of ham in a pattern of 1-to-2-inch diamonds, cutting 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch deep. Insert a whole clove into the intersection of each diamond.

5. Brush fat with glaze, working it into the scored lines. Using your hands, pat brown-sugar mixture all over ham. Use toothpick halves to secure fresh bay leaves around the bone; hide the end of each toothpick with a whole clove. Return ham to oven.

6. After 20 minutes, baste ham: Brush sugar coating with some of the remaining glaze mixture; never baste with drippings from the pan. Baste every 20 minutes until the ham is brown and crusty, making sure to baste quickly so the oven temperature doesn't drop.

7. Transfer ham to a carving board, and let cool for 30 minutes before carving. Cut a few thin slices from the side of the ham that is rounder and protrudes more, to make a flat base. Stand the ham on its cut side -- the meatiest part of the ham is not on top. Slice straight down in 1/4-inch intervals until you hit the bone. Run the knife horizontally along the top of the bone to remove the slices. Serve with molasses biscuits.