No matter how you slice it, honey-baked ham is a real crowd-pleaser and a spiral-sliced ham ensures a flavorful result that's a breeze to serve. The presliced spiral technique, invented by Harry Hoenselaar in 1957, ensures even, thin slices that absorb the delicious flavors of glaze while cooking. Because the ham is generally sliced much thinner than the average home cook can manage with a carving knife, serving portions tend to be lower in calories, too.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the ham from its packaging and place it, cut-side down, in a roasting pan. Cover the ham, loosely, with aluminum foil. Place the pan on the center rack of the oven. Bake the ham for 45 minutes.
Pack the brown sugar, firmly, into 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup measuring cups. Empty the sugar into a small mixing bowl. Measure the honey, mustard and water and add to the sugar. Blend the ingredients until smooth.
Remove the ham from the oven. Discard the foil cover. Brush all of the honey glaze mixture over the surface of the ham. Place the ham, uncovered, back in the oven.
Cook the ham for an additional 30 minutes. Brush the ham, occasionally, with its own juices to keep it moist.
Remove the ham from the oven and brush it once more with glaze from the pan. Allow the meat to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before transferring it to a serving platter. Spoon or ladle the juices over the ham. Garnish with dried or fresh fruit and serve. You should have enough ham for up to 16 guests.
- For a healthier recipe, trim and remove any excess fat from the ham before baking. Ham is a versatile leftover -- you may want to buy more than you'll need.
- To carve: Cut all around the ham bone with a sharp, pointed knife deep enough to release the number of slices you want to serve. Next, cut through the slices at the natural, fatty seams that separate the meat into sections.
- Save the ham bone for flavoring soups or stews.
- Pre-cooked hams can become dry if over-baked or under-glazed.
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