A super simple recipe for cooking a gammon in coke in the slow cooker.
Prep: 5 Minutes
Cook: 240 Minutes
Total: 245 Minutes
Yield: Serves 6-8
This recipe comes straight from Matt, who usually refers to this as his 'Christmas Ham', as (guess what?!) he usually makes it at Christmas. To be fair, it really does deserve the name, as it really does kind of taste like Christmas... Sweet and sticky, salty, and with notes of cinnamon, cloves and star anise. Pretty Christmassy, right?
This is one of those recipes that will remind you just how great gammon can be, and it's also super cost effective when you compare it to the price of cooked hams. You also get the added bonus of filling your home with wonderful aromas for a few hours whilst it's cooking, not to mention the plaudits from the family once they tuck in. Any leftovers also make for one of the best ham sandwiches you might have ever had... Trust us.
What's the difference between ham and gammon?
Both gammon and ham are prepared using pork, usually cut from the hind legs of the pig. The pork is salted, or brined, and sometimes smoked as well. The difference between gammon and ham is; gammon is raw and must be cooked before you can eat it. Ham is already cooked, and ready to eat. Technically, once a gammon has been cooked (boiled, or roasted etc.), it becomes ham.
How can you tell if gammon is cooked?
Gammon will firm up when it is cooked, so a simple way to know whether your gammon is cooked, is to insert a knife, or skewer into the centre of the meat and pull it out. If the meat feels at all springy, then it isn't cooked. The best way to check whether your gammon is cooked (and this goes for all meat really, if you want the best eating experience), is to probe the internal temperature. Gammon should be cooked until it reaches 75C at the deepest part of the joint.
- Gammon Slipper Joint (1.00-1.50KG)
- 500ml bottle of original Coca Cola
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 10 cloves
- 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
- 1 tsp Schezwan pepper
- 2 large star anise
- 1 tbsp corn flour
- 1 tbsp water
- Add the gammon to a medium sized slow cooker.
- Pour over the Coca Cola, add the cinnamon stick, cloves, sugar, pepper and star anise.
- Set the slow cooker to high and leave to cook for at least 4 hours.
- Once cooked, remove the gammon from the slow cooker and leave to rest on a large plate, or bowl.
- Remove the cinnamon stick, any star anise, or cloves from the leftover liquid.
- Add the liquid to a large saucepan over a high heat, bring to the boil, then leave to simmer over a medium heat.
- Add the corn flour and 1 tbsp water to a small bowl and mix to form a paste.
- Add the corn flour/water mixture to your saucepan and stir through until the liquid starts to thicken up and form a sauce/gravy. Add another corn flour/water mixture if you want the sauce thicker.
- Take the sauce off the heat and leave to cool.
- Glaze your gammon with some of the sauce whilst it's still warm, and keep the rest for serving time.
- Serve hot or leave to cool and serve cold.
Why put gammon in coke?
Coke has a great flavour. It's cinnamon and nutmeg notes really lend themselves extremely well to gammon. Furthermore, let's not forget, coke contains a lot of sugar. This is useful for cooking, as basically, what you have is a pre-made glaze. The sweetness of the coke combined with the saltiness of the gammon, really works fantastically.
Can you use Pepsi instead of Coke for ham?
Absolutely. The only thing I would say is, whatever brand of fizzy pop you're using, make sure you use the full fat stuff. The amount of sugar in these is great for cooking, and means you basically have a pre-made sweet and sticky glaze at the end.
Should I soak gammon before cooking?
Soaking gammon is a way of removing any excess salt in the meat, and is not usually necessary these days. Most gammon is produced to a very particular specification, which has limits on the amount of salt that can be added to the meat. All the gammon we sell here at True Bites is mild cured, unless explicitly stated, and doesn't usually require soaking.
That being said, there can be exceptions, so if you're using a home cured gammon, or specialty cure from you local butcher, you should ask them about salt content, as some cures can be stronger than others.