Happy Holiday Entertaining With Ham
November 21st, 2012

ham1This holiday season, delight your guests with one of these holiday ham themes. For a memorable gourmet feast that has a Southwestern flair, start with the pepper jelly-glazed ham for the main entree and add the featured complementary side dishes to continue the Southwestern twist. If you would like to keep with a more traditional theme, the apricot-glazed ham served with a green bean casserole, garlic mashed potatoes and a fruit salad is sure to be a winner.

Pork Tips

  • Remove ham from the oven and allow it to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing to allows juices to redistribute. The internal temperature will rise about 5 degrees.
  • The National Pork Board does not encourage freezing cooked ham, since it affects the quality and mouth-feel of the meat. However, leftover ham for use in soups or casseroles can be cut up into slices or cubed and stored in the freezer for 2 to 3 months.
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines say pork can safely be cooked to medium rare at a final internal temperature of 145 degrees, followed by a three-minute rest time. Ground pork, like all ground meats, should be cooked to 160 degrees.

Apricot-Glazed Ham

Source: Recipes and photos courtesy of National Pork Board. For more information about pork, visit http://www.porkbeinspired.com.


  • 5-pound fully cooked, whole, boneless ham
  • 1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 2/3 cup apricot nectar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice


  • Place ham on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Bake, uncovered, in a 325-degree oven for 11/4 hours or until meat thermometer registers 140 degrees, about 15 to 18 minutes per pound.
  • For the glaze, in a small saucepan combine brown sugar, cornstarch, nutmeg and cloves. Stir in apricot nectar and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened and bubbly. Brush ham with the glaze. Continue baking 15 to 20 minutes more, brushing occasionally with glaze.

Serves 10

Spiral-Sliced Ham with Pepper Jelly Glaze


  • 5- to 6-pound fully cooked bone-in ham, half ham or spiral sliced
  • 1 8-ounce jar hot pepper jelly


  • Place ham in shallow pan and heat in 350-degree oven, uncovered, for 11/4 hours—about 15 to 18 minutes per pound—until internal temperature on a thermometer reads 140 degrees.
  • The last 15 minutes, pour the pepper jelly over ham, spreading evenly. Continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes more, basting occasionally.

Serves 10 to12

Asparagus Vinaigrette


  • 2 pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons breadcrumbs, toasted
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, halved


  • Steam asparagus spears until tender; drain and place on a serving platter. For the vinaigrette, put the oil, lemon juice, mustard, salt and pepper in a small jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake. When ready to serve (can be served warm or at room temperature), pour the vinaigrette evenly over asparagus, sprinkle with breadcrumbs and garnish with cherry tomato halves.

Serves 6

Corn and Green Chile Souffle


  • 4 cups whole corn kernels, divided
  • 4 cups milk
  • 3/4 cups cornmeal
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 3-ounce cans diced green chiles, drained
  • 11/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


  • In the bowl of a food processor, puree 2 cups of corn; remove to large bowl and stir in the remaining corn. Set aside. Heat milk in large saucepan until hot and stir in cornmeal. Cook, stirring, about 5 minutes, until thickened. Stir in reserved corn mixture and remaining ingredients. Pour mixture into a buttered 2-quart souffle dish or casserole and bake in a 350-degree oven until filling is set and crown is browned, about 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Serves 8

Cold Herbed Garbanzo Beans


  • 1 16-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained
  • 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 cup ripe olives, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  • Combine the first six ingredients in a large bowl; mix well. Whisk together vinegar and mustard. Add olive oil and blend, then add to bean mixture. Toss well. Chill fo several hours.

Serves 4