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The Menu for a Ham Supper

by Carlye Jones

There's no need wait for Easter or Christmas to come around to serve a ham supper. A baked or smoked ham is perfect any time of the year by choosing a recipe that suits the season. Paired with two or three side dishes, a ham supper can feel festive without being expensive or time-consuming.

Ham

The ever-popular ham with pineapple rings is delicious, but there are many other ways to prepare a ham. Alternatives include ham with apples or pears, mango-glazed ham, chipotle-topped ham, herb-crusted ham, honey and buttermilk ranch-glazed ham or smoked ham. The type of glaze or spices used to cook the ham can help narrow down the choice of side dishes. For example, a mild honey-baked ham goes well with flavorful side dishes, while a spicy chipotle-topped ham needs a few mild flavored side dishes to help balance it out.

Potatoes

Ham and potatoes go together like bread and butter. While creamy mashed potatoes are a great standard dish, consider other recipes like garlic and cheese mashed potatoes, baked potatoes with sour cream, scalloped potatoes, potatoes au gratin or roasted baby potatoes with thyme. Help your kids fall in love with roasted potatoes by providing ketchup or ranch for dipping. Other types of potatoes can add a twist to classics, like using sweet potatoes to make traditional mashed potatoes or combining sweet and white potatoes in a scalloped potato recipe.

Vegetables

Vegetables are great for adding extra flavor and visual interest to a ham supper. They are also a super source of vitamins. Nearly any vegetable goes well with ham, from steamed asparagus to corn with butter. Choose a family favorite, or let the other menu items determine the vegetable choice. If the other items are rich and filling, such as ham with apples and scalloped potatoes, choose a light vegetable such as peas with onions. On the other hand, if the rest of the menu is lighter, such as honey glazed ham and roasted baby potatoes, select a vegetable dish that is slightly more filling, such as a green bean casserole. Or, if you're running short on time, opt for a simple mixed green salad with cucumbers, tomatoes and creamy dressing.

Bread

Although the potatoes provide enough carbohydrates for a healthy meal, bread is a staple in a traditional ham supper. Dinner rolls are a good choice, but other breads that go well with ham include homemade honey wheat bread, corn muffins or potato bread. Younger kids enjoy making mini ham sandwiches on dinner rolls. A spicy ham, like a chipotle-topped ham, also goes well with tortillas. Serve the bread with real butter and honey or fruit jam.

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