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Curing your own hams!

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
I have some people ask me about how I make my hams. So here ya go!
(similar to wet curing CB)

Ham is a pretty simple process. Brine, pump and smoke/Cook.

As for all brining, use food safe containers!
I use a stainless steal pot.
Be sure to let the brine cool to 40°!!!!

The brine:
Pretty basic
(Quantities are based on per gallon)
1cup kosher salt
½ cup brown sugar
1Tbs pork seasoning (premixed or your choice)
2TBS lemon pepper.
2 tsp of onion powder
2 tsp of garlic powder(or cloves)
1Tsp adobo seasoning.

1TBS of Morton's Tender per pound of meat.

Flavor brine consists of water and salt. Other ingredients may include sugar, brown sugar, honey, molasses, maple syrup, fruit juices, beer, liquor, bay leaves, pickling spices, cloves, garlic, onion, chilies, citrus fruits, peppercorns, and other herbs and spices. Many recipes call for bringing the ingredients to a boil to dissolve the sugars and bring out the flavor of herbs, then cooling the mixture to below 40°F before use.
Feel free to experiment!

The pump:
I use Morton's Tender quick.
1cup Morton’s tender quick to 4 cups water.
Boil until all the salt is dissolved.
I like to add ½TBS lemon pepper and brown sugar to the pump as well.
Cool it to 40°!

I use a 4oz Stainless steel meat pump for the pickle.

The cut of meat should be pumped to 15 % of its "green weight".
So if it's a ten pound shoulder it should weigh 11.5 # after pumping.
(That's just a rule of thumb.)

Make sure you pump close to bones to prevent bone sour.

Let it sit in a fridge for 10-14 days.
When it is ready wash it thoroughly to remove any excess salt.
Soak it in clean water for about 2hrs.
Change the water and soak for 2 more hours.
If I have time I may soak over night 8-12hrs
If you don't soak it the ham will be too salty.

Now you’re ready to smoke/cook.
post #2 of 2
Are you pumping it and then putting it in the brine for the entire time?
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