Fresh Ham Question

Discussion in 'Pork' started by iowabbd, Jan 7, 2010.

  1. I want to smoke a large bone in fresh ham for a family get together at the end of the month. I need to cure the ham before I smoke it. My problem is it is so stinking cold here I am not sure I can do it in the garage with out it freezing. I dont have the room in my kitchen fridge. My question is about the curing temp. I believe the optimal temp is 38. Will it be a problem if it is colder than that? Also will the salt in the water make the freezing temp less? Any ideas will help. I have smoked ham before just never cured one. I am about tired of the single digit temps already.
  2. I didn't give much time for an answer but the day is sneeking up on me. So if anyone has any suggestions I would appreciate it.

    I will be sure to post Q View of the process.
  3. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    How big is your ham, what are you planning on brining it in? I have the same issues where I am from its just too cold out in the garage to do anything. My thought for you was to see if you get one of those huge ziplock bags (can't remember the size) and see if you can put your brine in that and make room in the fridge for the bag and ham. That is what I do in the winter. I can't really help you on your question about if the salt will lower the freezing temp of the brine. I would think it would lower it a bit but I have no idea how much and it would suck to wake up to a frozen ham/brine.
  4. bbally

    bbally Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    You won't have a problem being below 38 F, it just slows down osmosis so you may need a extra day or so.

    Do you have a salometer?

    If you know what temp you garage is I can calculate the time effect.
  5. Right now it is about 20 degrees but we are supposed to warm up this week. I am going to but the ham/brine in a cooler and i can wrap it with blankets to insulate if need be. I think I will get the brine made early and have it out there a couple days in advance to gauge the temp better before I potentially ruin a ham or miss my window to have it done by,
  6. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You will improve your chances with timing by injecting brine as well. In large whole hams this should be done anyway, to prevent bone sour. You better get on that if it's a whole rear leg....

    I cured one in this type weather last year... in a cooler. Inside for 12 hours...back outside... sigh. But it worked.

    I don't know if an ambient of 20° is gonna allow for curing... but BBally would know if anyone.

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