Gammon with a mustard glaze
Boiling the gammon very, very slowly keeps the meat moist and tender, and there is very little shrinkage. Discarding the first pot of cooking water helps to get rid of any excessive saltiness. The second lot of cooking liquid, flavoured with vegetables and herbs, will make delicious ham stock for use in soups - so strain this and store in the fridge or freezer but don't throw it away!
1.75kg - 2.25kg (4-5lb) unsmoked boneless gammon joint, tied
2 onions, quartered
2 carrots, peeled and cut into 5cm /2 in pieces
2 celery stalks with leaves, cut into 5cm / 2in pieces
2 bay leaves
12 black peppercorns
For the glaze:
4 tbsp soft brown sugar
2 tbsp dry English mustard
Place the gammon joint in an extra large saucepan. Cover with cold water and slowly bring to the boil. Carefully pour away the water and scatter the prepared vegetables and seasonings around the meat. Refill the pan with cold water, making sure the water covers the meat. Return to the heat and slowly bring back to the boil.
Lower the heat so that the water only just bubbles, very gently. Cover the pan and cook for 2 hours, making sure that you maintain this very gentle bubble. When done, a skewer will pierce the meat easily, and the juices will run clear.
Preheat the oven to 200°C / Gas 6.
Remove the meat from the cooking water and place in a roasting tin. While the joint is still warm, gently peel off the skin. Using a sharp knife, score the fat in a diamond pattern, taking care not to cut all the way through. Mix together the sugar and mustard and press the mixture over the joint to cover the fat.
Place the meat in the centre of the hot oven and cook for 10-20 minutes. Turning the roasting tin at intervals to ensure even browning. If some parts are beginning to burn, cover that part with a piece of foil.
Serve hot or cold.