Why I decided to make a ham in the middle of the week is anyone's guess. Josh picked up a spiral-sliced ham that was extravagantly on sale at the grocery store (I hope there are more hams on sale after Easter!) and it had been in the refrigerator for a while--it really needed to be cooked. It probably could have made it to the weekend but I was leaving town on Sunday and really wanted to eat some ham!
I'm going to count the ham I made as Baked ham II (p. 507) even though I didn't totally stick the recipe.
I feel I can count this recipe because I made the glaze. Brown sugar, mustard, and cider vinegar--it seems like a really strange combination but my love of vinegar in food is steadily rising so I was on board.
The ham was taken out of the oven and glazed when it had about thirty minutes left on the time. By this point it smelled amazing.
It took a few hours but the ham was finally done. The time is where I differed from TJOC--I figured that the TJOC recipe wasn't spiral ham specific so I used the time recommendations on the ham wrapper (which required considerably less time). Either way, it's already cooked, all I was doing was (essentially) heating it up.
I drained the ham glaze from the bottom of the roasting pan to pour on the ham slices.
How was it? DELICIOUS! So good it required capital letters. And it fed both of us, on and off, for a week. The ham was great hot and cold and I ate it by itself and in sandwiches. I want another spiral sliced ham! I be honest, I'm getting hungry for ham as I write this....
The first side dish I decided to make was Scalloped cauliflower (p. 267), a recipe that has been on my "to make" list for quite a while. Josh and I both love cauliflower but I kept putting the recipe off because I didn't want to make the white sauce that the was required.
Simple start--steam cauliflower:
Another error occurred here--the recipe requires two cups of white sauce. 'No problem' I thought as I made a batch. After I was about half done I noticed that the white sauce recipe only produced ONE cup--not two, so I had to start again. Frustrating! When I finally finished the white sauce, I poured it on top of the casserole, and sprinkled breadcrumbs and Parmesan on the top.
Into the oven it went:
Tasty! The cheesy/cauliflower combo was delicious, the breadcrumbs were terrific on top, and it heated up well.
I thought that Broccoli cheese casserole (p. 261) would be another excellent side dish for the ham. A lot of people tell me that they don't like TJOC because they think it refers back to other recipes far too often. The newest edition doesn't do that frequently but the old editions certainly do. The broccoli cheese casserole recipe went back to the old days--it only had four "ingredients" but three of the four required you to find and make other recipes.
First, I steamed broccoli and added it to a greased casserole dish that had been sprinkled with bread crumbs.
The casserole requires Mornay sauce (cheese sauce) II (p. 551). Mornay sauce is a really simple cheese sauce that is in a ton of recipes. The mornay recipe says that Swiss, Cheddar, Gorgonzola, Roquefort, or Stilton could be used--well, Stilton would certainly make an impression on your guests but I'm not sure if it would be a good one. Cheddar was specified in the casserole recipe, so that's what I used.
To begin, I made a white sauce.
I wasn't sure if I was supposed to make the entire white sauce recipe through the seasoning or what exactly to do--since the mornay sauce was seasoned separately, I waited. Four ounces of grated cheese are mixed in and the sauce is seasoned. Then you stir, stir, stir until all the cheese melts--which took WAY longer than I expected. It was very frustrating.
When it was finished, I poured the sauce over the broccoli. The broccoli and sauce were supposed to be tossed together before going in the dish but I missed that line so they weren't
It was cooked until bubbling and browned.
It was tasty! Broccoli and cheese are such a delicious combination. If I was to make this recipe again I would add lemon juice to the steamed broccoli because it became a strange grayish/green color that wouldn't be impressive to dinner guests. Even so, it was good and heated up really well.