This sweet maple-glazed gammon recipe is a clever update on a classic roast. Serve it with bittersweet roasted chicory and a fresh slaw to cut through the salt.
2 carrots, peeled and sliced 2cm thick
2 onions, peeled and sliced 1cm thick
3 cloves garlic
2 sprigs sage
2 bay leaves
4 heads chicory, halved lengthways
1 (approximately 2kg) boneless gammon join, skin scored in a diamond pattern
300ml chicken stock
50g brown sugar
75ml red wine vinegar
for decoration cloves
100ml maple syrup
FENNEL AND APPLE SLAW
1 head fennel, shredded
2 Granny Smith apples, cut into matchsticks
1 small red onion, finely sliced
finely sliced lemon
1 generous tbsp mayonnaise
1 tsp Dijon mustard
a few leaves coriander, finely chopped
10 mint leaves, finely sliced
- Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160/gas 4. Arrange the carrots, onions, garlic, sage, bay and chicory in a deep pot or roasting tin, and put the gammon on top, skin-side up. (As the gammon has been cured, there’s no need to season it.) Drizzle with olive oil and pour in half the chicken stock. Cover and put in the oven for an hour.
- Take the gammon out of the oven and uncover, then carefully fish out the chicory, taking care not to burn yourself, and put it onto a plate. Put the gammon back in the oven for another hour, uncovered, basting every 15 minutes.
- Put the sugar and butter in a frying pan, and melt them together. Add the chicory and cook, turning the pieces in the caramel, for a minute or two. Add the vinegar and bubble away until it almost evaporates. Turn off the heat and leave. (You can gently re-heat in the pan later).
- When the second hour is up, remove the meat from the oven, and increase the temperature to 220C/fan 200/gas 7. Push the cloves into the skin evenly all over.
- Pour half the maple syrup all over the meat, and put back in the oven. (Keep an eye on it, as the temperature is higher.) After 5 minutes, pour over the rest of the syrup and return to the oven. After another 5 minutes, carefully spoon the syrup and juice that’s dripped off the meat back over. Repeat this process 2-3 more times until nicely caramelised.
- Remove the gammon from the oven and lift it onto a plate. Rest for a good 30 minutes.
- To make the gravy, add the rest of the chicken stock to the gammon cooking pot or roasting tin, and put on the hob to bring back to the boil. Simmer for a few minutes, then crush the veg so the sauce thickens slightly with the pulp. Strain well, pushing all the liquid through into a clean pan, and discard the veg. Reheat to serve.
- Meanwhile, to make the slaw, put the fennel, apple and onion in a bowl. Squeeze over the lemon juice and add a pinch of salt. Mix well and cover with clingfilm. Leave in the fridge for 30 minutes, then take out and give a good squeeze, discarding any liquid that comes out.
- Add the mayonnaise, mustard, coriander and mint, and mix well. Add more salt, if needed, and finish with freshly ground black pepper.
- Serve the gammon with the reheated chicory, a good spoon of slaw and a jug of the hot gravy.