Tired of roasts? Gammon makes a wonderful alternative!

A gammon is a wonderfully succulent joint of meat that is always a crowd-pleaser, and it isn’t just for Christmas, as it makes a great alternative to a roast. With so many ways to cook gammon you will never run out of ideas. As a salty meat it is well complimented by sweet glazes and fruit such as cherries, pear, pineapple or apple puree.

Guaranteed to be a lip smacker this festive season, so we encourage you to try out the recipe below, and be sure to invite the whole family!


Baked Sugar-Glazed Whole Gammon


  • 2 heaped tablespoons demerara sugar
  • 1 whole gammon, about 5.4-6.3 kg
  • about 24 whole cloves
  • 2 level tablespoons made-up English mustard



Pre-heat the oven to 160ºC. Soak the gammon according to the supplier’s instructions.


Then tear off two very large pieces of foil and arrange one lengthways and the other widthways over your largest roasting tin. Place the gammon in the centre and bring the widthways piece of foil up first and seal the two ends together by folding over to form a kind of pleat. This should be done loosely so there is room for air to circulate around the gammon.


Now bring the lengthways pieces up at each end and tuck these all round to seal what is now a parcel.


Place the parcel (in the tin) in the oven and let it bake for 20 minutes per 450 g – that is 4 hours for a 5.4 kg piece or 4 hours 40 minutes for a 6.3 kg piece.


About 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time, remove the gammon and increase the heat to 220ºC. Open up the foil and transfer the gammon to a work surface. Now drain off all the juices.


Next peel off all the skin – make a couple of horizontal incisions and you should be able to peel it off in strips, using a cloth to protect your hands from the heat. Now score the fat with criss-cross cuts, making a diamond pattern. Stud a clove into the centre of each diamond shape, then smother the mustard all over, using a palette knife to spread it evenly. Finally sprinkle the sugar all over and press it in with your hands.


Return the gammon to the tin and bake for a further 30 minutes or until it is a glazed, golden mahogany colour.

If it’s to be served hot, leave it to rest for about 45 minutes before carving.

If cold, leave it to cool slowly overnight.


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