When Jones Dairy Farm asked me to come up with a recipe featuring one of their hams, I was a little stumped. I prefer eating ham with a sweet glaze, but that can be difficult to accomplish while keeping it low carb.
I felt that I had already exhausted my savory ham recipe ideas with this Rosemary & Mustard Crusted Baked Ham recipe I came up with last year – so now what?
I mulled it over for a bit, and then decided to experiment with ways to make a sweet and flavorful, yet still low carb glaze using cherries as a base.
As a side point, don’t dismiss fruit simply because you are doing low carb. When used judiciously and in small amounts, fruit can be a nice treat that doesn’t break your carb bank.
To illustrate that point, I wanted cherry flavor but not a lot of sugar obviously, so I went with 1/2 cup of canned tart cherries in juice as a base for the sauce. I boosted the flavor with cherry extract and simmered it with added water, then pureed it with some sweetener and xanthan gum to thicken it a bit.
Now I had the cherry flavor I wanted but it was a little one-note, so to make it more interesting and give it more depth I added some allspice and chopped chipotles in adobo sauce. Winner. Sweet, tart, and with a touch of heat, this cherry chipotle sauce is the perfect complement to a salty ham.
[pinterest text=”Cherry Chipotle Baked Ham – a low carb and gluten free recipe from ibreatheimhungry.com” layout=”horizontal” image=”http://www.ibreatheimhungry.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/hamjdsmall-500×698.jpg”]
Sauce complete, I scored and studded the ham with cloves while cooking (optional), basted it with the sauce a few times during baking, and then drizzled it with a small amount of molasses just before serving – the entire family loved it, and my 6 year old son called it the “best ham ever.” High praise, trust me – the kid loves ham! I agree with him too, this may be the best ham I’ve ever made.
Of course, sauce aside, it doesn’t hurt that the quality of the actual ham is superb. Jones Dairy Farm sent me this beauty by mail, and you can order it (or one of their many others) online as well – though the shipping at this time of year is pricey. To offset the shipping costs, Jones Dairy Farm is generously offering a special deal in December:
1) 25% off each bone-in and semi-boneless hams purchased online with Promo Code: Jones25
2) $5.00 off each boneless ham purchased online with Promo Code: JonesHam
If you’re more about convenience than budget right now, or want to send someone a ham as a gift, then I definitely recommend it. Otherwise, you can use their store locator to find a store that sells Jones Dairy Farm ham products near you.
My ham was boneless, which was great for carving into nice thin slices. Many hams come with the bone in though, which can be intimidating – especially if you’re carving it in front of guests and want to impress them with your mad skillz. Don’t worry though, Jones Dairy Farm has you covered with this awesome 2 minute ham carving tutorial video that will demystify the process and eradicate your carving anxiety forever!
Did you know a ham has a shank AND a femur? I too lived in ignorance once – BUT NOT ANYMORE! I watched this life changing video and now my knowledge of crucial ham anatomy is complete! Don’t be jealous, you too are only a couple of short minutes away from ham carving glory.
After you watch this video you will OWN that ham and carve it like a BOSS! People will look on in wonder, mouths agape, at your ham carving prowess. Imagine it in your mind (you’re smiling a little aren’t you?) …now make it happen. Go on, I’ll wait…… Cool right? High five.
[pinterest text=”Cherry Chipotle Baked Ham – a low carb and gluten free recipe from ibreatheimhungry.com” layout=”horizontal” image=”http://www.ibreatheimhungry.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/hamjd2small-486×700.jpg”]
Cooking for one or two and don’t need a giant ham? This sauce would be just as good over a couple of Jones Dairy Farm ham steaks – and no carving required!
I’d still watch the video though (if you haven’t already), because you never know when someone will stop you on the street and ask you how to carve a ham the right way. Be prepared people! You don’t want to get caught off guard, standing there awkwardly with no ham carving knowledge to impart do you? DO YOU???? Avoid that tragic outcome by educating yourself today. You won’t be sorry.
- ½ cup canned pitted tart cherries in juice see example
- 2 Tbsp chopped chipotles in adobo sauce see example
- ½ tsp cherry extract see example
- 1 cup water see example (lol, made you look!)
- ½ tsp allspice
- 2 Tbsp granulated sugar substitute see example
- ½ tsp xanthan gum see example
- 5lb Jones Dairy Farm boneless ham (or other)
- 2 Tbsp whole cloves (optional)
- 1 Tbsp molasses
- Combine the cherries, chipotles, cherry extract, water and allspice in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and pour carefully into a small blender or magic bullet. Add the sweetener and xanthan gum and puree. Pour back into the saucepan and simmer for another five minutes. Set aside.
- Place the ham in an ovenproof roasting pan. Pour in water to a depth of 1 inch. Score the top ⅔ of the ham in a diamond pattern to a depth of about ¼ inch. Pierce with cloves (if using). Tent the ham with foil and bake at 325 for about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and baste generously with the cherry chipotle sauce. Return to the oven, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Remove and baste again, then return to the oven for another 20 minutes or until the temperature at the center is 140 degrees.
- (This will obviously take longer if you are cooking a larger ham.)
- Remove ham from the oven and baste with sauce a final time. Heat the 1 Tbsp of molasses in the microwave until runny - then drizzle it over the top of the ham. Remove cloves before carving.
Obligatory Disclaimer: The Jones Dairy Farm products were provided to me at no charge, and I received monetary compensation for writing this post. All recipes, photos and lame attempts at humor are my own.
Need some low carb side dish recipes to complement your ham dinner? Try my Better than Potatoes Cheesy Cauliflower Puree, Zucchini and Sweet Potato Latkes, and/or Brussels Sprouts with Lemon and Pine Nuts!
Or for some of my best recipes yet, download my ebundle and get all three of my published books (over 75 original recipes) for only 9.99!!!
Finally, don’t forget to enter the December Kindle Fire Giveaway for your chance to win a new Kindle Fire HD with a cover in the color of your choice!!!