Table of Contents: PORK

When selecting a ham half, I buy the butt portion. It is slightly more expensive per pound, but yields more meat and seems easier to slice. There is no problem using the shank portion, if preferred.

8-½ lb. uncooked, cured half ham

1 cup brown sugar

1 tsp. ground cloves

1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 (14-oz.) can whole berry cranberry sauce, divided

1 (15-oz.) can mandarin orange slices, drained (optional)




Trim and discard the half ham of excess fat. Rinse the ham and drain on paper towels.

In a small bowl mix together the brown sugar, cloves, and black pepper; then stir in one-half of the whole berry cranberry sauce to blend.

Use an iron skillet or other baking pan about the size of the ham that is deep enough for the juices. The ham will cook uncovered, but place a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil into the cooking vessel for easy cleanup after baking. Place the ham with the cut-side downward into the cooking vessel. Pour the cranberry mixture over the ham to allow it to flow over the meat.

Bake the ham, uncovered, for about 2 ½ hours; then remove from the oven. Place an oven rack under the broiling element and change the oven setting to "Broil" with the temperature on 500 degrees.

Carefully turn the ham for the cut-side to be facing upward. Spoon the remaining one-half can of whole berry cranberry sauce on the high-side of the ham and smear the cranberry sauce over the cut-side of the ham. Place the mandarin orange slices on the cut-side of the ham in a nice design.

When the oven temperature has reached 500 degrees, put the cooking vessel on the oven rack placed for broiling. Watch carefully, this cooking time will be short. Allow the cranberry sauce and mandarin orange slices to get hot and begin to sizzle, then remove the ham from the oven.

Allow cooling time before slicing the ham.


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