FRESH HAM WITH 1,000 CLOVES OF GARLIC
The name of this recipe is a slight exaggeration, but you'll probably use more garlic cloves than you've ever
used in one recipe before. (Don't worry — the roasted garlic has a mild taste.) This dish originates
in the south of Spain and uses a fresh ham that's a whole leg of pork, not cured. It's juicy and tender
and has a crispy, crunchy skin called crackling. It's a good big-party recipe, but it takes almost
eight hours to cook, so give yourself plenty of time.
Serves 18 to 20
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1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated (1 to 2 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 (16-pound) whole fresh ham, scored
3 garlic heads, broken apart, cloves unpeeled
3 tablespoons sherry or applejack brandy
2 cups beef broth (bouillon cubes or canned is fine)
2 tablespoons butter, softened
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
|Preheat the oven to 300°F.|
|In a small bowl, combine the oil, ginger, and soy sauce; rub the paste all over the ham.
Place the ham on a rack in a large roasting pan. Place
3 or 4 large garlic cloves in the pan and place the pan on the bottom rack in the oven.
Roast 5 hours; discard the garlic. Add the remaining unpeeled garlic cloves. Continue
roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted deep into the ham registers 160°F, 1 to 2 hours longer.
|Transfer the ham to a large platter and let rest for 15 minutes. Reserve the garlic cloves.|
|To make the gravy: Discard all but 1 tablespoon fat from the pan. Place the pan over medium
heat and add the sherry or brandy, scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
Stir in the broth and bring to a simmer. With a fork, mash the butter and flour into a paste — a beurre manie.
Whisk the paste into the gravy; continue whisking until thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Strain the gravy through a fine-mesh sieve and keep warm.|
|To serve, cut the ham into slices. Serve each portion with some crackling, a few garlic cloves,
and a ladle of gravy.|