Simple Smoked Ham

A simple recipe for smoked ham, perfect for Easter, Christmas or any holiday. Adapted from Michael Ruhlman’s recipe for American-Style Brown Sugar-Glazed Holiday Ham in Charcuterie.

Side view:

Simple Smoked Ham

For the brine

1 gallon/4 liters water
1 1/2 cups/350 grams kosher salt
2 packed cups/360 grams dark brown sugar
1 1/2 ounces/42 grams pink salt (8 teaspoons)
1 12-15 pounds/5.5-6.75 kilogram ham, aitch bone removed

Combine all the brine ingredients large enough to hold the ham and stir to dissolve the salt and sugar. Submerge the ham in the brine, weighted down to keep it completely submerged and soak for 6 to 8 days, half a day per pound/450 grams.

Remove the ham, rinse it under cool water and pat dry. Place it on a rack set on a baking sheet and refrigerate it, uncovered, for 12 to 24 hours.

Hot smoke the ham at 200 degrees/93 C for 7 to 8 hours until it reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees/68C. Remove the ham from the smoker and allow to cool and refrigerate. (We placed the ham in the middle of the smoker and used applewood. If you’re not an experienced smoker, we advise that you put the ham in the oven and cook at 200 degrees.)

To serve, slice and serve cold, or reheat it in a 275 F/140 C oven until warm in the center. Test with a metal skewer.

Yield: 16 to 18 servings.

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