Virginia Glazed Ham

Serves 14-16 people

Whether you’re for a holiday gathering or a brunch party, this ham recipe is great for feeding an large number of people with very little work involved. I baked this for Lisa’s father’s birthday brunch and everyone commented on the great flavor and moistness of the ham.


  • 1 whole smoked ham (8 to 10 pounds), pre-sliced
  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 2 Tbsp. cup yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole cardamom pods
  • 1.5 teaspoons whole fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup prepared mustard
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 Tbsp. light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp. dark-brown sugar
  • 1.5 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoons unsulfured molasses
  • 2 fresh bay leaves (optional)


Rinse ham with cool water, and dry with paper towels. Let stand for1 hour at room temperature. Place rack on lowest level in oven; heat oven to 250 degrees. Line a roasting pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Place a roasting rack in the pan. Transfer ham to rack. Pour 1/4 cup apple cider over ham. Cook for 2 hours or until an instant-read thermometer registers 140 degrees.

Meanwhile, combine mustard seeds, cardamom, and fennel in a small heavy skillet; place over medium-low heat, and toast seeds, shaking pan, for 3 to 4 minutes, until aromatic. Transfer to a spice mill or mortar and pestle, and grind just until cardamom is broken up. Transfer spice mixture to a medium bowl. Add cinnamon, ginger, mustard,1 tablespoon light-brown sugar, 1 tablespoon dark-brown sugar, corn syrup, molasses, and remaining 1/4 cup apple cider. Combine well; set aside.

Remove ham from oven, and let it cool for about 30 minutes. Using a pastry brush or your fingers, rub the spice glaze all over the ham and into the sliced layers of the ham. In a medium bowl combine remaining cup light-brown sugar and 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoons dark-brown sugar. Using your fingers, gently pack sugar mixture all over the outside of the ham. If using bay leaves, secure them with toothpick halves around the shank bone. Return ham to oven and cook for 20 minutes. Sugar will begin to crystallize but there will be some hard spots of sugar; gently baste these areas with remaining glaze. Cook 40 minutes more, basting with remaining glaze after 20 minutes; do not baste with any pan juices. The ham should be dark brown and crusty; cook 15 minutes more if necessary. Remove and let cool slightly. Transfer to a serving platter, and let stand 30 minutes before carving.



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