Hammy New Year!

At our house, we celebrate New Year’s Day with ham, cabbage (or greens), black eye peas, and cornbread—tradition for good luck in the coming year.

Ham doesn’t have to be a laborious undertaking. I use a pressure cooker. This year I pulled out my oldest electric cooker, my trusty Power Pressure Cooker XL, because it still works great and its 8-quart capacity is perfect for my 6 pound, semi-boneless ham. (Unfortunately, Tristar stopped selling this model)

I borrowed a trivet from my Instant Pot 6 quart, added two cups water, and placed the ham on the trivet. That’s all that’s necessary, but I wanted to jazz it up a bit since, you know, it’s New Year’s Eve and I feel festive. So I inserted a few whole cloves and added some dried mango for a bit of sweetness to complement the savory pork. Any fruit works, especially pineapple and dried apples. Use what’s convenient for you.

Mangoes and cloves add interesting flavor notes.

Forty minutes later, the ham is hot and ready to serve (after the pot depressurizes, of course.) Plus the pot has a delicious broth* perfect for flavoring vegetables or soaking dried black eye peas.

I always use this method for cooking ham, and without any fancy additions. A good ham and a couple of cups of water for forty minutes in the pressure cooker is delicious on its own.

Happy New Year!

Slice and serve.

*Caution: don’t add salt until you taste the ham. It can be salty enough as is. Then season as desired.

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