Because of the diverse nature of the many different restaurants and chefs Brian Henry has worked under he is highly proficient at a wide range of cuisines.

Brian’s cooking is seasonal, inventive and smart, but in no way unapproachable or fussy. When he is coaxed out of the kitchen and starts talking about food, his passion and knowledge are instantly recognizable.

"Chef Brian Henry cooked a series of delicious appetizers for us as we sat around a table in the kitchen". Thanks

Tony Aspler, Wine writer

“Chef Brian Henry puts one hundred percent of his energy into going all the way.”

Birgit Moenke, Editor Stir Media Read More Reviews

Gastronomically yours,

How to Ham-it-up this Easter Weekend!

A ham is a cut of pork that in its entirety contains all four muscles found in the hind leg of a pig. These muscles cover the hip and shank bones which when cooked impart a great deal of flavour into the ham.

The shank end of a ham has the thigh bone running right through the center of the meat. Shank meat is very easy to carve but tends to be a chewier cut of ham compared to the hip end which is much more difficult to carve due to the complicated structure of the hip’s joint and aitch bone.

Roast Swine

Today most grocery stores sell hams that are fully-cooked. These processed hams have also been previously cured by dry aging, smoking or brined in salt and sugar. This style of ham is often packed with preservatives and nitrates. We do not cook these hams, we simply re-heat them. These processed hams should never be basted with their own pan drippings as it makes for an exceptionally salty ham. As convenient as these hams are to work with I find that they are often over salted and over-cooked with a texture that begs you to try and blow bubbles with it.  These pre-prepared hams are typically served with a sweet fruit, maple syrup or sugar glaze as the added sweetness balances the added saltiness found in processed hams.

A” leg of pork” or “fresh ham” is the names given to raw, uncured hind pig’s legs that have not been smoked, cured or previously cooked.  These hams are more commonly found in butcher shops and require you to fully cook them. Fresh hams are a delight to eat as they are moist like pork tenderloin and cook up like a pork roast with a rich pork flavour.

Cooking a fresh ham takes a little longer than processed hams. Most recipes state that a fresh ham is considered cooked when it reaches an internal temperature of 160 °f /71 °c which causes the natural juices to be squeezed out meat fibers as they shrink or contract during the cooking process. This can cause your ham to be tough and dry. I recommend cooking your ham to an internal temperature of 170 °f /77 °c as this higher temperature will ensure that the collagen and connective tissues within the ham have melted which will disperse themselves into the dry meat fibres resulting in a juicy tender slice of ham.

For those of you wishing to enjoy the upcoming holiday weekend with a feast of distinction try a fresh ham available at distinctively local butcher shops like the Community Butcher Shop located on George St., in downtown Peterborough with the following recipe. Note that it is a 24 hour process for this recipe.
Roasted Fresh Ham

Ingredients:
8-12 lb. bone-in fresh half-ham, skin removed
1 lemon, zest and juice removed
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup Italian Scallion Spice Blend
8 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup white wine vinegar

Method:

Using a boning knife, score the ham in its layer of fat in a diamond pattern, with the diamonds about an inch in size that are about ¼ of an inch deep.
Use a food processor to combine the lemon juice and zest, olive oil, rosemary, garlic, 1 tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. pepper into a coarse paste. Rub the paste all over the ham. Store ham tightly covered in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

When it comes time to cook the ham; pre-heat your oven to 350°F. Place the ham fat side up on a wire rack lined roasting pan and cover the ham with foil. Cook the ham, covered for 3 hours. Remove foil and gently drizzle ham with vinegar.  Continue roasting the ham uncovered for another hour or more and baste it every 20 minutes, until the ham is well browned and reaches an internal temperature of 170 °f /77 °. Be sure to check the internal temperature in several places without touching any bones. Remove cooked ham from oven and allow it to rest on your carving board.

While the ham is resting make pan gravy in the roasting pan by skimming any fat off of the drippings and heating the pan on the stovetop over medium heat whisking in a glass of white wine and 1/2 cup chicken broth. Be sure to scrape all of the tasty bits off of the pan into the liquid. Thicken sauce with roux or cornstarch. Serve immediately to 8 -10 dinner guests.

order online at www.chefbrianhenry.com

order online at www.chefbrianhenry.com

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Comments are closed.



reservation
Chef Brian for Hire
The Spice Co.