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Feb 28, 2013 08:27 AM

Fresh ham help

Right on the tails of my pork shoulder post from yesterday, I now need help with a fresh ham as well! The pork shoulder is for Easter, but I've been summoned to make some kind of roast for Palm Sunday. I thought about doing a trial run on the pork shoulder, but some of the same family members will be present, so I'd like to make a fresh ham (raw, not cured). I've never made one and have only ever eaten it once, years ago, but I remember absolutely loving it.

From what I gather, I intend to ask my butcher for an 8-10 pound raw fresh ham from the shank portion of the pig, with the bone and fat still intact. Does that sound right? I've gone through all the threads and I understand a lower cook time--say 250-275--is best, and cooking to an internal temperature of 150ish is the way to go, since the carryover will bring it up to 160. How many minutes per pound?

My plan is to simply rub it down with mustard, salt, pepper and make deep incisions in the roast to insert some garlic.

For those who didn't read my other thread, the same rules apply to this one--I have to cook it at my house, transport it to my mother's house to be eaten there, so it won't be eaten until about 4 hours after it comes out of the oven. My plan is to follow the wonderful directions I was given on that thread for the pork shoulder--cook it, double wrap in heavy duty foil, then wrap in two large towels and set in a cooler to keep it warm. I'll blast it with heat at my mother's house to get the skin crisp.

If anyone sees any problem with anything I'm writing, please let me know
:-) I guess my question is--how long per pound should I cook a fresh bone in ham cut from the shank? I'm assuming the cook time will be far less than for a fatty cut like a shoulder. Since it's going back in the oven at my mother's house, should I maybe pull it out of the oven at 145, so it doesn't dry out?

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  1. I just looked up fresh, uncured pork/ham on the bone on the Cooks site. It indicates 20 mins. per pound at 350 degrees with a finished meat temp of 150 degrees. I checked it for both 12 lbs. and 18 lbs. and the time and temp are the same. I would pull it out at 140 to 145 degrees and let it come up on the counter. Hope it works for you!!

    1. In general, the approach is the same for both roasts. The variables in this for the fresh ham to consider are:

      * which temperature you select
      * the weight and size of the specific fresh ham

      While it may seem like 25* may be negligible, 508 can make a world of difference in the final results for moisture, tenderness and shrinkage. If you cook at 250 or under, you do not have to worry about the meat drying out. Again, depending on the roast size and thermostat setting, you should figure on about 30 minutes per pound as a guideline.

      From reading the details you have provided, the only thing I will opine on is to say when you get to your Mother's house, place the roast into the oven for a slow warm up phase @250* for 30-60 minutes, followed by a high heat blast for only 8-12 minutes. A straight high heat blast will dry the meat out.

      Some other points to note:

      * Depending on the roasting temperature, your carry over temperature may not rise as much as you anticipate

      * Holding a roast is far easier than cooking it up, or rushing it. so consider a lower temperature, even if it means roasting in the oven overnight.

      2 Replies
      1. re: fourunder

        I'll definitely cook it at 250 then...if it's 12 pounds, I'm guessing 6 hours should be enough time; I'll probably allow for extra time...I'd rather it be done a bit early than too late!!

        Thanks again!

        1. re: italianyc84

          Depending on your oven's accuracy as the variable to consider most, I think you are looking at 40-50 minutes per pound to get the roast to 155-160*....which extends it to 8-10 hours roasting time, plus more time holding the roast... If you hit temperature sooner than expected, it's fine, as it's far easier to hold a roast then cook it up. I would expect at least 8 hours for the total process

          FWIW, I plan on roasting a full Steamship Ham @ 225* overnight, expecting 10-12 hours plus a minimum 2 hour rest, or holding period at 140* inside the oven.