Christmas Recipes Part 3.

Ham Brined, cooked and yummy. After a few trials and stupid here who had her silly head on and just cocked it up! We have perfection! Well close..ha ha.

Mincemeat soaked overnight ( standing on a tray filled with water)SAM_7360 and wet t/towel..pesky ants..didn’t want to swim..ha ha. Where there is a will there is way says the human to the ants…. For those of you who want to make their own then here is the recipe..


36oz of dried fruit…..I used raisins, sultanas, chopped prunes and some dried cranberries.

12oz brown sugar.

Zest and juice of 2 oranges and 2 lemons.

2oz chopped almonds or nut of your choice.

1lb Apples peeled and chopped.

8oz vegetable suet.

4tsp mixed spice.

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4tsp fresh nutmeg grated.

6 tbsp Brandy.

Mix all ingredients except for Brandy, cover and leave overnight SAM_7359for fruit to plump up and absorb flavours.

Cook on very low heat for 30 mins.

Cool and stir in Brandy.

Spoon into sterilized jars , cover tightly. Store in cool dark place.

Home brined and Cooked Ham.


2 kilo Piece of Pork Loin.

For Rub:

4tbsp Salt.

2 tbsp sugar.

scant 1/2 tbsp Salt Petre.


21/2 Litres of Water.

900 gm salt.

2tbsp sugar.

1/2 tbsp salt petre.

Method Day One.

Very important …Put on gloves..I use surgical gloves.

Mix salt,Sugar and Salt Petre together. Rub over Pork and put in container , cover and leave in fridge overnight.

Brine: Measure out water into saucepan, add salt,sugar and salt petre. Bring to boil. Simmer 10 mins and cool. I cool overnight.

Day Two:

Remove Pork from Container..clean container with weak bleach solution.

Put Pork back and cover completely with Brine.

Put in fridge and leave for 4-5 days.

Cook by chosen  method either bake in oven or cook on hob. I prefer cooking on hob as I think it keeps ham moist. SAM_7362

I cover Pork with water bring to the boil then drain of water. Add fresh water and Bay leaves, Peppercorns, Coriander seed, mustard seeds black and yellow,Piece cinnamon, 4 or  5 cloves, cardamom seeds and tbsp brown sugar. You can use any mix you prefer I generally use what I have in my cupboard on the day,  I have also added cider to the water on occasions or beer.

Cook for 35 mins per kilo. Allow to cool in water.



This is my opinion and I have considered this seriously…I have used celery juice mix to brine which was ok but it had that underlying taste of celery which although I like celery did not particularly like the taste on my ham. Salt petre for the amount used and the dilution which according to my research the human body can cope with,  against the fact that if I contracted botulism because of my brining my body was unlikely to cope with .. my personal decision for myself and my family was to use it….You must however use gloves as if it comes into contact with your skin it will cause a reaction.

My personal take on this was I am sure that during my lifetime I have unknowingly consumed far more and maybe far worse than I could envisage so this to me was a considered decision and I believe this way I am consuming less preservatives than in bought ham or bacon. Again my personal take on this.

Wow that was a lot of spiel for me…


8 thoughts on “Christmas Recipes Part 3.

  1. Pingback: Christmas Recipes…Mince Pies and Puddings | Retired? No one told me!

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    1. blondieaka Post author

      We will will be boiling hot but that’s the thing you know..when I was in the Uk and it was warm everywhere was stripped of salad stuff and if I had dared to cook a hot meal I would have lynched..but here however hot it is they want shepherds pies, roasts, liver and bacon hot meals hardly ever a salad I just get it….maybe it’s what they miss and as much as they love Thai food they want a bit of home 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. blondieaka Post author

      Yes it’s because I brine my own and I have roasted what I do sometimes is once I have boiled it, I glaze with honey and stud with cloves and put in oven for 15 mins which makes it look nicer. Or if I do a whole leg like at christmas/easter I double quantity of brine but it takes 25 days to brine . So I experimented with Pork loin and much quicker and enough for a week and can just keep it rolling by having one in fridge and one brining. Can’t stand shop ham it’s either of unknown origin( yuk) or expensive so hence learning to brine . Thank you for your visit:)



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