Pic of Perfect poached gammon

Perfect poached gammon

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Simple cooking & prep

Perfect poached gammon

Main Serves 6 1h 25 min
Gammon is a cured organic pork that when cooked offers a wonderfully succulent crowd-pleasing joint. This recipe slowly poaches the gammon and offers a choice of two glazes to finish it off with a flavoursome edge.

Cook's notes

You want the gammon to cook very slowly, the water should barely be simmering, 85°C is the perfect temperature. If you are serving the gammon hot, allow the joint to rest for 30 - 40 mins before carving.


For the gammon

  • 1.5kg gammon joint, soaked overnight (see method)
  • 1 onion, peeled & quartered
  • 2 leeks, halved
  • 2 carrots, peeled
  • 2 celery sticks
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 peppercorns

For a citrus glaze

  • ½ jar Seville marmalade
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tbsp ginger, grated
  • 75ml orange juice

For a mustard glaze

  • 2 tbsp English mustard (or 4 tbsp wholegrain)
  • 3 tbsp muscovado sugar
Image of Perfect poached gammon


Prep time: 10 min
Cooking time: 1h 15 min

Soak the gammon

  • Step 1

    To soak the gammon, place it in a large, close-fitting pot. Cover in cold water and leave to soak in the fridge for 8 hours or overnight - this flushes away excess brine.

Poach the gammon

  • Step 1

    Discard the soaking water and cover with fresh cold water. Add the veg, bay and peppercorns, before slowly bringing to the boil.
  • Step 2

    Reduce heat and simmer for 80 min. When ready remove from the cooking liquor (don’t discard, it makes a great stock for pea and ham soup).
  • Step 3

    Allow the gammon to cool enough to let you lift the skin with a thin-bladed knife and carefully separate it from the joint, without removing the layer of fat underneath. Discard the skin and score the fat layer into a diamond lattice pattern, taking care not to cut through to the meat. If your joint is of a shape liable to roll, cut away a slice to create a flat base (eat this as a cook’s perk). Place the gammon back in the roasting tray.

Make the glaze

  • Step 1

    For a citrus glaze, warm all the ingredients in a small saucepan until the marmalade has melted, then brush over the joint. For a mustard glaze, spread the mustard over the surface of the joint then sprinkle over the sugar.
  • Step 2

    Return to the oven for 20-30 mins, or until golden and glistening.

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