My Easter Hams!

Discussion in 'Pork' started by bladebuilder, Mar 24, 2015.

  1. Just about a month ago, I was lucky enough to come into a great deal on pork, more specifically, whole hogs. Some may remember...

    I had already made back bacon, belly bacon, ribs, and had a lot of sausage planned. But never did a ham. I remember my dad, when he went home to Quebec, always bring back these whole hams, wrapped in a cheese cloth wrap, and smelling like heaven. Him and my mom would debone them, and freeze the packages, and we would have ham with eggs, or as a main dish on special occasions. In my time till I left home, I remember only 3 times, they brought hams home.That and a pile of maple syrup, maple sugar (soft spread, and hard blocks) Dad would make maple toffee around Easter, and pour it on fresh snow to set... But I digress! Lets just say, those memories are fantastic!

    So on to this story. After butchering the pigs into the larger primals, I figured I had to do hams for Easter! So took two whole hinds, trimmed them, shortened the hock, put them into a meat tub, and in the cooler. Then run inside to dig up Pop's method of ham making. Made up 3 gallons of Pop's brine but added pure maple sugar as well, cutting back a bit on the white and brown sugars. Injected along, and around the bones in as many places and directions as I could figure, then immersed, and weighed them down, and into the cooler for 28 days.

    So after drying, into the stockings they went, then into the smoker to warm up a tad. Pre heated the smoker for an hour or so, it was -5C yesterday.

    After 5 hours, the color is coming along nicely! IT @ 105F

    It was dark when the smoking was done, IT was at 154 when I turned off the propane. I left them in the smoke house to cool/smoke till the second run of pellets from the 18" AMNTS had burnt out (Todd, this tube smoker is perfect for this larger smoker!!). Went out this morning, and took them in, Still 54F int the smoker this morning, total time under smoke was 14-16 hours. Not sure exactly when the tube stopped smoking.

    Here they are, just out of the stockings.

    And of course, had to try it!!

    Now into the fridge till Easter to rest and mellow!

    I have to throw out a huge thank you to all of the experienced, knowledgeable members here, who love what they do. Freely offer help and recipies, and try to keep us knuckelheads safe!!

    A special thanks to Pop's for sharing his family recipies, and taking the time to do all the great tutorials. Also thanks to guys like Dave, Bear, Martin, Wade, Joe, and too many others to remember.

    Oh yeah! The ham is DAMN good!! Get smokin'!
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2015
  2. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Awesome lookin hams.

  3. gunkle

    gunkle Meat Mopper

    Looks good. well done
  4. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    Looks good. I have some shoulders in Pop's brine right now that will be our Easter "ham". 
  5. They look sweeeeet! I'm coming for Easter.

  6. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I should have started one, to late now
  7. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    POINTS!!!! Great looking smoke, I wondered what happened to all those little Piggies you had hanging!
  8. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    So you gonna smoke 'em again for Easter? Double smoked hams are pretty nice.
  9. woodcutter

    woodcutter Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The only missing is blue ribbons next to those hams. I'm sure your going to enjoy them.
  10. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    They look fantastic!  I am so glad to have shared this so others, like yourself, could enjoy some home cured and smoked meats!  It is just a wonderful feeling that you can benefit from it!  Thank you so much for enjoying the process and look forward to some Hamalicious Qview!  Tell us all the wonderful things you did with them!  Already drooling!  (my personal favorite, broiling on the grill - oh wow, just a whole 'nuther level of yum!).
    forager likes this.
  11. That is some nice looking ham

  12. b-one

    b-one Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Great looking hams!!!:sawzall::points1:
  13. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    That looks amazing, nice hams.... Enjoy !


  14. Hey guys! Thanks for the points and comments!

    Foam, I want to double smoke, but SWMBO figures the flavor is there, and doesn't think the "store bought" variety uses smoke. I explained that ham is ham because of cure, and smoking is the way it used to be/should be done! We will see... I have to agree, the flavor is pretty darn nice!

    Pops, I'm gonna have to see whats left after Easter if any to try other ways, but we have an old family recipe that steams the ham for 2-3 hours till super tender, then its portioned, and roasted in a pineapple/brown sugar glaze, till it caramelizes on top. Scalloped potatoes, or a "hash brown casserole", brown sugar/butter glazed carrots... Man I'm drooling! Haha!

    kesmc27... If you show up, I'll find ya a chair!
  15. chewmeister

    chewmeister Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Those hams look fantastic. Well done and excellent post. I wish I had the storage room to do whole hams. [​IMG]
  16. I just put up a chicken coop in the back yard, but now I'm re-thinking that it might make a good smokehouse.  The wife might not agree, but now I really want to have a wooden smokehouse so I can do whole hams like this.  And I agree, Pops brine is the easiest method, though Bearcarver's bacon is very very good too.  I've done it both ways now and I think one is just as good as the other.  Just depends on your tastes.  I may have to keep both methods going all the time to keep everyone in my household happy.  Just brought home two pork bellies and MY pops bought them for me because after sampling my bacon, he begged me to start on one for him ;)

    Again, great looking hams!
  17. dave17a

    dave17a Smoking Fanatic

    Wanna do
    Wanna do that! Great post.
    Pop, you are the inovater here. . Best bacon on brine that everybody ate, and that is many.[​IMG]
  18. disco

    disco Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What an interesting thread and great hams!


  19. Great looking hand!!:points:
  20. Great Looking HAMS< How do i fine POPs Brine[​IMG], saw it mentioned a couple times

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