Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Recipes and techniques using brine.

Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby Chris Ritchie » Sat Oct 12, 2013 6:26 pm

Hello,

This is my first post to the forum so be gentle. I've gleaned alot of info from y'all and deeply appreciate all the expertise.

What method/recipe do you recommend for curing large, whole, bone-in, skin-on hams weighting 6-9kg? I will be helping slaughter 20 pigs over the next few months and dont know the specific weights yet.

I have used Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstalls cider immersion cure several times with good results but have come to learn that I am dancing with the devil regarding the risk of bone sour with large hams. Also, the brine is expensive.

I've noticed that most people are working with smaller cuts and that the brine calculators are not meant for larger hams.

Thanks for the help
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby NCPaul » Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:40 pm

Welcome to the forum. :D This thread has some good ideas for curing hams:

viewtopic.php?f=17&t=10218

I agree that brining a large ham can lead to big problems. It sounds as if you will have several to work on and can try a couple of recipes.
Fashionably late will be stylishly hungry.
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby Chris Ritchie » Thu Oct 17, 2013 7:46 pm

Thanks NCPaul,

Yes, I get to play with several hams. Thats alot of responsibility!
I am leaning toward the Injection/Dry Rub Combination Brine Calculator using Saltpetre.
This method does the math for me and allows me to hand off the hams to cure in peoples fridges after I have prepared them. (Space is an issue)

Anything left out of the beginners guide or calculator that you would like to add?

I have not decided upon a spice mixture. Anyone play with injecting liquids besides water? I have access to fresh pressed cider (non-alcoholic).
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby wheels » Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:00 pm

Chris, Hi. Was it you who asked about this on my blog? If so, my apologies for not replying sooner; I've been on 'bed rest' :cry: and find it very difficult to write when lying on my side.

I'll leave you in the capable hands of the members here.

Phil :D :D
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby Ruralidle » Sun Oct 20, 2013 2:27 pm

Get well soon Phil
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby wheels » Sun Oct 20, 2013 3:24 pm

Thanks, I should be up and about in a couple of days. :D :D
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby quietwatersfarm » Sun Oct 20, 2013 9:07 pm

Ruralidle wrote:Get well soon Phil


Ditto
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby Chris Ritchie » Sun Oct 20, 2013 11:04 pm

Yes, Wheels, I posted on your blog as well.

Take Care.

Again, anybody play with injections besides strictly water based? I was thinking half fresh apple juice half water and perhaps lowering the sugar to compensate for the sweetness of the apple juice.
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby ped » Mon Oct 21, 2013 10:17 am

And ditto also
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby RodinBangkok » Mon Oct 21, 2013 10:29 am

As you are planning on making more than one ham, I'd suggest you keep your first one simple. Focus on the basics, insuring you inject properly, deep into the muscle, use a good long needle for a full size ham such that you can get from the outside all the way to the bone. Insure you pump to a weighed percentage of the total weight of the ham. And I'd suggest just a simple cure, this will give you a base line such that you can then experiment with different techniques/brines, flavorings, etc. Keep good notes and weigh everything. Then in the future change perhaps one or two things at most, and test the result, it takes time to develop your technique and also your formulations. Making too many changes to process and or ingredients at one time will not tell you what works and what tends not to. I see a lot of folks starting with curing, or other forms of cooking, especially BBQ doing a lot of kitchen sink recipes, where they throw in about everything, not a good way to learn how to do curing, or in fact any type of cooking. Keep it simple at first and make slow deliberate changes from your notes as you modify a formulation to your final liking.
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Re: Curing Large Hams (6kg-9kg)

Postby NCPaul » Mon Oct 21, 2013 3:48 pm

Great advice Rod. :D
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