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Learning to Make Your Own Smoked Picnic Ham
During the Holidays, in different countries, many people go into panic mode and storm into various grocery stores to buy foods and things that are relevant to the occasion. Among all these things, in some places, ham is the crown jewel of the foods-to-have.
But what if you can save yourself from the trouble of getting on the line to buy processed meat such as ham and just create it by yourself ?
You might think that this is not a good idea especially if you don’t have enough credentials to consider yourself as someone able to cook. But given simple steps, even beginners like you can actually create something good, and yummy such as smoked picnic ham.
Why You Should Consider Doing This on Your Own
You might not know this, but when you indulge yourself in buying and consuming ready-made products such as processed ham, you are actually putting yourself in unknown dangers.
You have to remember that these products are mass produced. That would mean the concentration of various ingredients, preservatives and many more that were used in making such products remain constant over time.
This could present a problem for you if you don’t like, or if you cannot eat something too salty or too sweet. You cannot do anything about the taste of the food you are about to consume because that’s the way it is produced.
With this, you will then feel bad that you cannot eat something that you like, such as a smoked picnic ham. But it does not have to come to that point. You can change your predicament by doing your ultimate option – learn the process of smoking picnic ham.
What You Need to Know About Smoked Picnic Ham
Before you can learn the way to smoke a picnic ham, you should first know what it is that you to deal with. For those who are not yet aware of it, “picnic” refers to the cut of the meat at the shank end of pork’s shoulder. The other end is called pork “butt” and is perfect for what is known as pulled pork.
Given its characteristics, the meat on the “picnic” area remain a bit darker and tight as compared to other parts of the pork body, thus making it perfect to be turned into ham.
Buying this portion of meat should be a serious business for you if you want to do something good such as smoking picnic ham for a family dinner. You have to make sure you get the prime cut and you should also bear in mind that you have to get fresh meat for all of this to work out.
How to Create Your Own Picnic Ham
To make this happen, you need to have the perfect salty brine solution to which you will immerse the whole meat to turn it into ham. To create this brine, you will need the following:
- 10 litres of water
- 500 grams of kosher salt
- 100 grams of pink salt
- 75 grams of sugar
- 75 grams of brown sugar
- 1 Table spoon of black pepper corns
- 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon yellow mustard seed
The key in here is to boil some of the solution you have made in order for the spices to soften and add more flavour to your brine. When this is done, you can add water until it reaches 10 litres.
After that, you have to cool the resulting solution to 40 degrees Fahrenheit. When it is cold enough, you can add the picnic cut meat and put the mixture in a cool place. You can even make use of your average coolers in your house.
Wait for six days. After the 6th day, you can take out the meat from the salty brine solution. Rinse it with clean water and dry it well. When there seems to be no sign of wetness anymore, put the meat in the refrigerator for another two days. This is needed to make the skin of the meat dry, making it easier for the smoke to be absorbed by it.
After rinsing and drying, you are now ready for the most important part of the process – smoking. Using your smoker, you need to process the brined meat for about 7 – 8 hours. Do not repeatedly check the meat inside the smoker. Just wait for the allotted time to end.
Keep in mind that you need to need to start the couple of hours with the smoker reaching until 180 degrees Fahrenheit. For the next 4-5 hours, you can raise the temperature to 215-230 degrees Fahrenheit. Make it reach 240-250 degrees Fahrenheit for the final hour or until the meat has internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
When this is done, your smoked picnic ham is now ready to be served.
Some Serving Suggestions For Your Smoked Picnic Ham
First of all, you have to prepare this masterpiece on the same day that you are planning to serve it. This is best served while it is still hot and fresh out of your smoker. There is no need for you to do anything to improve its taste because the brining process had that covered for you.
Just put in a large plate and slice it into small pieces or as you desire. You can eat it as it is or you can add it to some of your vegetable-based meals. Either way, you will surely feel rewarded when you see that your friends or your family is enjoying the fruit of your masterpiece.
You’ll also definitely love seeing what appears to be a pork belly from the portion of the meat just under its skin. However, you should remember that you must keep things in moderation. You should eat just the right amount of this food to avoid health problems. Besides, you have 10 pounds of smoked ham in your plate.
You might as well share it with others for them to be amazed by how you were able to create your own ham and make something yummy out of it.