Nothing says Christmas in South Africa, quite like Gammon, does it? It’s one of those meals thats reserved solely for Christmas. If I had Gammon at another time during the year, I’d feel as if I was cheating on Christmas … I’m sure some of you know what I mean. So, with it being the Festive Season, I decided to make a little Gammon for Andrew, Hudson, My Mom and I for dinner on the 23rd December … an opening act, to the main Gammon coming on Christmas day, if you will. If we can only indulge in Gammon at Christmas, then lets at least enjoy two 🙂
The result? A resounding YUM!!! Even Hudson enjoyed it and I didn’t think he would eat meat just on its own like that, but he loved it. The best part is it was so easy to prepare, almost had me thinking, I could make this a few times a year… just kidding Christmas!
I used a deboned and non smoked gammon but you could use smoked too – will add to the flavour.
2kg boneless gammon
3 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
2 celery sticks, roughly chopped
1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
2 Tbsp Black Pepper Corns
Maple, Honey & Mustard Glaze:
80ml maple syrup
80 ml honey
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
100g demerara sugar
Whole Cloves (A lot)
Place the onion, carrots, celery and gammon in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes. Allow gammon to cool slightly before removing from pot and setting aside. If cooking a day in advance, once your gammon and cooking liquid have cooled down, you can return the gammon to the pot with the cooking liquid in it and refrigerate until the next day. Just remember to take your gammon out of the fridge 30 – 45 minutes prior to moving on to the next step.
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees.
Make your glaze by mixing all ingredients together until the sugar dissolves. Remove the rind from your boiled gammon by gently running your fingers between the rind and the fat. You should be able to pull it off in one piece, leaving behind a thin even layer of fat. Score the fat in a criss-cross diamond pattern, taking care not to cut into the meat. Stud the centre of each diamond with a clove. Generously coat the gammon with half the glaze, using a pastry brush to spread evenly. Roast for 15 minutes before removing from the oven and brushing over the remaining glaze. Return to the oven and roast for another 20 – 30 minutes, until the gammon is a rich golden brown colour, taking it out occasionally and basting with the pan juices. Remove from the heat and allow to rest for 15 minutes before serving.
I served mine with Mustard Mash, Honey Glazed Baby Carrots & Asparagus and it paired perfectly! Let’s just say there was no space left for dessert 🙂
I was invited to the “Your first taste of our Christmas” party by Woolworths (aka the Mothership) and took my Mom along. From arrival, I knew it was going to be a good party … the black runway carpet led us into the building, where we were whisked up by a waiting elevator to the Inner City Ideas Cartel building’s roof top bar (What a great venue for a function!) in Waterkant Street, Cape Town. As the elevator door opened, we were greeted with a glass of bubbles – Yes please ! A second later, we were handed this delicious snack platter for 2 …
Two very happy customers
Jenny D from Top Billing was there and let’s just say my Mom was a little star struck (She’s a big fan) …
Woolies had a beautiful display of their festive food on show … some old favourites and some new items too.
(if you haven’t already, you have to try the Chocolate Brownie Mince Pies – OMW!)
They had Chef’s cooking up a storm in a make shift kitchen downstairs, churning out the most delicious canapés, using the Woolies products on display and the results were delectably delicious !
The Canapé Menus – each prepared by a different Chef
Some of the delicious canapés we sampled – The Gammon Bitterballen Balls were a favourite, as was the pulled duck salad
Creative and inexpensive cutlery holder idea !
The gift bag we were spoilt with when leaving …
Thank you Woolies, we had a ball !
I am a potato kind of gal, always have been, always will be. Sadly, I am not one of those ‘ladies’ who will take just one or two roast potatoes when dishing up, I’m more of a 4 or 5 roast potatoes kinda gal *blush* Oh, and if its my Mom’s potatoes … oh boy, then I actually lose count! My Mom’s roast potatoes are legendary and for family affairs, roast potato duty always falls to her! I of course, do offer my services for ‘quality control’ and taste a few before meal time … its the least I can do and no, i don’t include those in my count ;p
So here is my Mom’s fail proof recipe for the crispiest and fluffiest roast potatoes ever! Warning: These roasties could eliminate banting forever !
Yield: Approx 20
approximately 375ml regular cooking oil
2kgs potatoes, washed,peeled and quartered
plenty of rock salt
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees
Place baking dish in oven with the oil to heat up
Place potatoes in cold salted water and bring to the boil. Allow to boil until potatoes are just soft but not so soft that a fork would slide right off. Drain with a colander and toss the potatoes to ruffle up it’s edges. Use a fork to prick each potato in a few spots – this will allow the hot oil to penetrate the potatoes. Sprinkle with a few good pinches of salt.
By now the oil in the oven should be hot, carefully place the potatoes in the oil and using a spoon, baste each potato. Roast in the oven for approximately 30 minutes, then remove from the oven, turn the potatoes, place back in the oven and cook for a further plus minus 30 minutes – until crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Place on a cooling rack and sprinkle generously with salt. Serve immediately.
Cooks Note: You may have to boil your potatoes in batches – don’t overcrowd the pot. Placing your potatoes on a cooling rack will allow air to circulate around the potatoes thereby avoiding the potatoes from steaming and losing their crispiness.
Photography by Darren Bester
Beetroot Cured Salmon
Yield: 10 as a main dish accompanied by sides
1.5kg side of Norwegian Salmon, boned & skin removed
4 Beetroots, grated
400g Caster Sugar
315g Coarse Sea Salt
2 Handfuls of fresh Dill, chopped
Zest of 3 Oranges
75g capers, chopped
Combine the beetroot, sugar, salt, dill, orange zest and capers in a bowl and stir to combine well. Line a baking dish or other dish suitable of holding your salmon comfortably, with cling wrap (but don’t tear off the cling wrap). Spread half of the beetroot mixture across the cling wrap, in the shape of the salmon, place the salmon on top of the mixture & cover with the remaining mixture, pressing it up against the sides to ensure all of the salmon is covered. Wrap tightly in the cling wrap a few times over to ensure its snug. Place a heavy pan or board on top of the salmon and place in the fridge for between 8 – 12 hours. Remove the cling wrap, rinse under cold running water, pat dry with carlton towel and either serve or refrigerate until required.
Cooks Notes: Don’t worry if your mixture becomes runny – just wrap up in the clingfilm as snug as possible. Be aware that over curing will result in a hard leathery exterior on your fish and it may become too salty so do not exceed the recommended curing hours.
Here’s the link to our Lunch Celebration Table, as featured on The Pretty Blog
Photography by Darren Bester
Yield: 10, as a side dish
x2 700g Bags of Baby Potatoes, boiled, skinned & cut into quarters
10 – 12 Quail Eggs, hard boiled & seasoned with salt and pepper
Caper Berries, some chopped up and some retaining original appearance
Red Onions, finely Chopped
2 Handfuls Chopped Chives
2 tbsp Dijon Wholegrain Mustard
2 tbsp Dijon Traditional Mustard
2 tbsp Honey
90ml Lemon Juice
250ml Olive Oil
Salt & Black Pepper
Micro Herbs for Garnishing
In a measuring jug whisk the mustards, honey, lemon juice, olive oil, salt & pepper until well combined and adjust seasoning to taste. Place the potato quarters, red onions, chives and capers in a large bowl and pour over the dressing, retaining a little for later. Stir well to combine, taste and season with salt & pepper. Carefully spoon the salad onto your serving platter. Arrange the quail eggs on the salad and lightly drizzle with the remaining dressing. Sprinkle over a few micro herbs for garnish & serve.
Cooks Notes: This salad is lovely served warm or chilled