The cut of meat from a hog's hind leg. Unprocessed meat is referred to as fresh ham, but most ham goes through a curing process after which is it referred to as cured ham. The meat can be dry cured (salting the surface); sweet-pickle cured (immersing in a sweet brine with seasonings); or injection-cured (meat is injected with brine). After curing the ham may be smoked.
Fresh Ham: Look for one with a firm white layer of fat, with a well-marbled lean portion. Cured Ham: choose one that is firm and plump; meat should be finely grained and rosy pink.
Fresh: Refrigerate up to five days. Cured: Refrigerate in original wrapping one week. Some country-style hams can be stored in a cool place 1-2 months.
bake, boil, fry, grill
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