Friday 12 April 2013

Nigella Lawson's Coca Cola Ham

So you probably read the title and thought "Ham? But it's April. Ham is a Christmas thing." Well, yes traditionally ham does come out at Christmas time, but why should it just come out during the festive season. Growing up in an Italian family, ham is not something we ever had at Christmas, it's just not our thing, our thing is lasagne and lamb and loads of other Italian goodies, so we never fully embraced the ham, and what a shame. This past Christmas I was in charge of making the ham, I had never made one before and I wasn't even sure I'd even sure I'd eat it, but I did and I loved it! I went to the trusty Nigella Lawson website and followed her Ham in Coca-Cola recipe, step-by-step and it turned out perfectly, so much so that I even made it this past weekend as a bit of a care package for someone. Considering how much meat is actually in a ham, it was actually really cost-effective and using this recipe made it oh so tasty, don't diss the coke until you've tried it!

(Adapted from the Nigella Lawson recipe featured here. Recipe credits from

  • For the ham
  • kilograms mild-cure gammon or ham
  • onion (peeled and cut in half)
  • litres coca-cola

For the glaze 

  • handful of cloves (I left them out)
  • heaped tablespoon black treacle
  • teaspoons english mustard powder
  • tablespoons demerara sugar or raw sugar 

1. Put the gammon in a pan, skin-side down if it fits like that, add the onion, then pour over he coke. Bring to the boil, reduce to a good simmer, put the lid on, though not tightly, and cook for just under 2½ hours. (If your ham is larger or smaller, work out timing by reckoning on an hour per kilo, remembering that it's going to get a quick blast in the oven later. but do take into account that if the gammon's been in the fridge right up to the moment you cook it, you will have to give it a good 15 minutes or so extra so that the interior is properly cooked.)

2. Preheat the oven to 240°c/gas mark 9. When the ham's had the appropriate amount of cooking time, take it out of the pan and let cool a little for ease of handling. 

3. Remove the skin, leaving a thin layer of fat. Score the fat with a sharp knife to make fairly large diamond shapes, and stud each diamond with a clove. Then carefully spread the treacle over the bark-budded skin, taking care not to dislodge the cloves. gently pat the mustard and sugar onto the sticky fat. 

4. Cook in a foil-lined roasting tin for approximately 10 minutes or until the glaze is burnished and bubbly.


              1. This looks so tender and juicy! Yum!

              2. Gorgeous ham. I'd never leave out the cloves - it's just not ham to me without them. :)

              3. This was one of the first Nigella recipes that I made and I loved it. Your ham looks very delicious! :D

              4. Coca-Cola glaze sounds so interesting! That's certainly a unique way of making ham!

              5. Looks good! Billy from A Table For Two has a cocoa cola chicken recipe which is great! Weird how soft drinks can work so well in food :P


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