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Cooking ham so it doesn't dry out?

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We have been going organic/humane and I'm getting a ham from a humane-treated pig. When I've cooked organic chickens, they come out dry, much more so than the puffed up supermarket chickens. For the ham, though, I don't want the learning curve to start at the bottom on Thanksgiving Day when I'm having some guests. How should I cook this ham so it's moist? Does anyone know??



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We're having ham this year. I found a recipe on for brining the ham (it is for fresh not country ham) and the reviews indicate that it is moist.


Here it is:



For brining ham



  • 4 quarts water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup table salt
  • 30 whole cloves
  • 4 whole nutmegs, cracked
  • 1 (8- to 10-lb) bone-in shank-end fresh ham, skinned and trimmed of all but a thin layer of fat


Bring all brining ingredients except ham to a boil in a deep 8- to 9-quart pot (such as a pasta pot), stirring occasionally until sugar and salt are dissolved. Remove from heat. Cool completely 30 mins. Add ham. (Brine should cover ham; if not, make more brine.) Chill, covered, turning ham once or twice, at least 1 day and up to 2.

For spice rub



  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 4 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 4 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
  • 4 teaspoons paprika
  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt


Finely grind all spice-rub ingredients together in an electric coffee/spice grinder.

Drain ham and pat dry. Rub ground spices all over ham.

For glaze



  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1/4 cup molasses (preferably mildly flavored)
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter


Oven method: Roast ham, fatty side up, on a rack in a large roasting pan in a preheated 350°F oven, about 3 hours. Put on glaze last 30 to 45 minutes.

Transfer cooked ham to a platter and cover loosely with foil. Let ham stand 30 minutes to 1 hour before carving. Serve with pan drippings (skimmed of fat).

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Are you letting you meat rest 20+ minutes before cutting? If you don't all the moisture evaporates when you cut it too early.


I also remember Emerald saying that you don't need to cook meat to the temperature that is recommended. That meat will keep heating up while resting to reach the correct temp.


Here is a good article explaining the process.

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Crock pot!!! Put brown sugar in the bottom of the crockpot. Place ham, cut side down in pot. If it is too big/tall for pot, cover with foil to seal. Cook on low.

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I first made this several years ago, and now I'll never cook a ham any other way!


It is SO juicy and yum and easy. The only thing I add is some chopped pineapple about 30 minutes before serving. I am :drool5: just thinking about it! I make it for easter and Xmas each year, and I've converted all my family too. The only drawback is that, even though I have the biggest crockpot there is, and I get the biggest ham I can fit in it, we don't have much leftovers. It's just too yummy!


ETA: And yes, if it means we'll die of lead poisoning, at least we'll die HAPPY!

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Those plumped up chickens/hams are plumped up because they are injected with stuff. (bad stuff, but stuff lol)


You can buy an injector and inject it with your own stuff. (the good stuff!) lol This should work on ham, too.


I used to have one, but it broke. I loved to inject chicken with a homemade marinade and cook it.

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