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Christmas ham – a special variety of ham

Today I’ll show you how to make a Christmas ham yourself. It’s simple and super quick to make. 

What makes Christmas? For me, the classic Christmas spices clove, star anise and ginger. And those are exactly what you’ll find in this ham. A very tasty affair if you like the spices.

In general, the Christmas ham is a raw ham from my ham book. However, since time was short this year, I turned it into a cooked ham. However, at the bottom you’ll also find my raw ham version. 

Want to learn more about ham? No problem, I wrote down all my knowledge in my ham book. Interested? Then click here.

But now enough talking… 

Here you can find the complete Christmas ham recipe as a video or to read through.

Have fun and good luck making it!

Christmas ham  – What do you need to make it?

Christmas ham-all ingredients

Ingredients per 1 kg 

  • 100% pork neck/top leg/back (1000g) 

Spices per KG mass

The equipment to make Christmas ham

Spice grinder/ mortar: 

Freshly ground spices taste best. But of course you can also use ground ones. It is best to use a spice grinder. Alternatively, you can use a mortar. Here, however, be careful that it is really very finely ground.

Make Christmas ham – Step-By-Step Instructions

1. Remove any tendons, fibers and silverskins from the meat. Make sure there are no large cuts or “pockets” in the meat. Now weigh the meat. Note the weight and then calculate how much salt and spices you need. Then weigh all the ingredients

Christmas ham-crave

2. Put the spices in a mortar and grind them. 

Christmas ham-spices

3. Spread the spices evenly on all sides of the meat. 

Christmas ham-spices 2

4. Put the meat into a bag. Make sure all the spices end up in the bag with it. 

Christmas ham-bag

5. Vacuum the meat. 

Christmas ham-vacuum

6. Place the bag in the refrigerator for the minimum curing time (1.5 days/cm thickness of meat). Turn the bag over occasionally. 

Christmas ham-fridge

7. Cook the Christmas ham in the bag at 68 °C (154.4 °F) for about 4 hours.  

Christmas ham-sous-vide

8. Take the ham out of the bag and dry it.

Christmas ham-dry

9. Your Christmas ham is ready 🙂 Let it cool down overnight.

Christmas ham-ready

How long is the shelf life of the Christmas ham?

Your Christmas ham will keep covered in the refrigerator for about a week. The alternative is to vacuum pack the ham in portions. When vacuumed, it should keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks. You can also freeze it. This will increase the shelf life many times over.

Christmas ham – raw ham variant

Follow the steps above up to and including point 6. 

7. After the curing time you can take the meat out of the bag and rinse it, then dry it with a kitchen towel.

8. Hang the meat in a dark place to dry. It should ideally be around 12 degrees (53.6 °F) and 75% humidity.

9. Leave the meat to mature for at least a week or as long as you like. Check it regularly.

10. Your Christmas ham ready 🙂 Enjoy!



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