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Gonna Smoke

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Sep 19, 2018
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South Carolina
...growing up, we ate it A LOT because it was cheap and maybe that's why as I got older, I never cared for any kind of potted meat. Fast forward a few decades and I decided that it wasn't really as bad as my memories said it was so I bought a couple of cans to keep in the cabinet for...well, for whatever. Those cans were lost in the darkness of that cabinet for a few years until last week when they found their way out in the light.

While searching SMF and the interweb for ideas on what to do with it, I stumbled across a recipe to make it myself. So armed with my new grinder, a minimum of knowledge, and the desire to try, I set out to do it. I solicited the help, A LOT of it, from SmokinEdge SmokinEdge . Two recipes and videos I looked at several times were the Wolf Pit recipe and video as well as the Sausage King video which has his recipe embedded. The differences are that the Wolf Pit version uses standard measures and the loaves are cooked in the oven in a double boiler setup. The Sausage King uses metric measures and cans his in pint jars. So I kind of combined the two and using percentages and weights, came up with this recipe with the help of Eric...
  • 2 Kg ground Boston Butt
  • 475g smoked ham
  • .25% of the weight of the fresh pork of cure #1, or 5g, none for the weight of the ham
  • .75% sugar or 15g
  • 40g corn starch. Recipe called for potato, but can't find it around here. Amazon, here I come
  • 1.25% non-iodized salt or 25g
  • 1 cup ice cold water
All of the percentages were based off the weight of the fresh ground pork since the ham was already cured and fully cooked.

Ground the sausage once through the 6mm plate...
20240127_090412[1].jpg


Because I was wanting chunks of ham, I ground it once through the kidney plate...
20240127_085855[1].jpg


All the dry ingredients were mixed together in the water to make a slurry...
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The slurry is mixed into the meat...
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This was divided in half. One half was left as is and put into a loaf pan. I mixed in 1 tsp granulated garlic and 1 tsp of cayenne to the other half and it was put into a loaf pan. Packed down as tightly as I could by hand, double wrapped tightly with foil and into a large aluminum pan half filled with cold water...
20240127_093658[1].jpg


Baked in a 250℉ oven for 3 hours, I was shooting for 155℉ I.T., but it was 165℉ when I pulled them. Placed a brick on top of the hot pans and left them on the counter to cool...
20240127_124546[1].jpg


After a couple of hours, they went into the fridge overnight with the bricks left on. Turned them out of the pans this morning to see what I had done...
20240128_062620[1].jpg

This is the 'spicy' one. Look close and you can see some of the cayenne...
20240128_062702[1].jpg

The regular one...
20240128_062248[1].jpg


So you just know we had to have some for breakfast...
20240128_095511[1].jpg


Next time, I think I'll cube up the ham instead of grinding so that I can see the pieces in the slices. This is what the Sausage King does and I liked the look.

For the spiced up version, I could smell the garlic when I unwrapped it, but the cayenne flavor was not very noticeable so maybe I'll double that next time. Feel free to offer up any other flavor advice.

This was really easy and if I can do it, anyone can. I appreciate all the help...
 
Looks absolutely great Charles. I’m glad you are now on our side. Great work. And just to be clear, you did all the work, but I sure enjoyed the conversation. Well done my friend.
 
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Looks great Charles! I love it fried now and then with eggs or on a sandwich with melted cheese. I bought a case on sale on Amazon. When I run out I'll have to give this a go.
Thanks, Jeff. It really is good and nothing like I remember store bought Spam tasting. Plus, I control the salt...
 
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I never grew up eating SPAM so the wife and I figured that we would pick up a can and see what it was like. We like it fried with mustard and mayo on dinner rolls. I also like it fried with eggs and toast.

My 12 y/o son likes it, but the funniest part is that his friend really likes it too. I can only imagine what his mom (a vegan) thought when he told her what he had here LOL!
 
Charles, what would you say the flavor was like?
Have a few things in mind of what I want to try. Like the idea of not grinding the ham and seeing chunks in end product. Really leaning for a chopped ham lunch meat... no, not the processed stuff that doesn't mold in like forever. But our small town grocer sells some that is excellent, not highly processed, but still more fun to make yourself... as you're finding out I'm sure!

Ryan
 
I've almost pulled the trigger on trying to make this several times, but seeing your results may finally make me dive in. Your results look darn tasty.
 
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Charles, what would you say the flavor was like?
Have a few things in mind of what I want to try. Like the idea of not grinding the ham and seeing chunks in end product. Really leaning for a chopped ham lunch meat... no, not the processed stuff that doesn't mold in like forever. But our small town grocer sells some that is excellent, not highly processed, but still more fun to make yourself... as you're finding out I'm sure!

Ryan
Ryan, to me it tastes like ham. Of course the good part about it is that I know what's in it...
 
Looks good Charles . Check the whole foods section of your grocery store if they have one for potato starch .


I have a thread on chopped ham loaf if you're interested .
View attachment 687120
Absolutely Rich. I like the looks of those slices with the big chunks. That's something I was trying to achieve with my Spam...
 
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. I like the looks of those slices with the big chunks. That's something I was trying to achieve with my Spam...
These were store bought chunks , but instead of grinding , cut your cubes and pre cure 3 days , then mix it with the grind . Add the salt and cure for the weight of the cubes . 3 days allows it to fully cure , build flavor and tenderize the chunks .

 
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