Advice on Smoking Fresh Ham

Discussion in 'Pork' started by djtech2k, Nov 24, 2015.

  1. djtech2k

    djtech2k Fire Starter

    WV
    I want to smoke a fresh ham for Thanksgiving and have never done it before.  Here are a few questions I have:

    Do you suggest brine?  Marinade?  Injection?  If so, any recipe?

    What is the cook time like?

    Any specific Do's or Dont's?

    I have done the pre-cooked spiral sliced ham's and they turned out very good.  This is a bit of adventure :)  I am deep-frying a turkey for the first time and smoking salmon along with this ham, so thanksgiving will be full of adventure this year.  I'm just running a little late on planning lol.
     
  2. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    What do you mean by fresh ham? Do you have a whole uncured pork leg? Or do you have a store bought cured and smoked ham that hasn't been sliced or glazed yet? 
     
  3. jckdanls 07

    jckdanls 07 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

  4. djtech2k

    djtech2k Fire Starter

    WV
    By fresh ham, I mean a raw, uncooked ham.  I do not mean a pre-cooked ham.  I am planning to pick it up from my butcher in the morning. 

    I will read the turkey fry thread also.
     
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    It's really too late for a Brine or marinade to have much impact. Injection would be fine but you need to babysit the smoker to make sure the heat does not drop below 225. Treat it like a Roast. Smoke to an IT of 150-160 near but not touching the bone. It will slice nicely and be juicy. I don't care for pulled ham because it can be dry. Guys that have more experience with these should be able to give a time. I have only roasted them at 325 and they take about 15 minutes a pound...JJ
     
  6. djtech2k

    djtech2k Fire Starter

    WV
    I plan to get the ham in the morning, brine/marinade all day, and cook early Thursday morning.  So I will have almost 24 hours of brine/marinade.  Is that not enough?
     
  7. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    In 24 hours you will get maybe 1/2" of penetration. Will not have a big impact but will get some flavor...JJ
     
  8. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    @Chef JimmyJ  is spot on. To turn a pork leg into a ham takes 3-4 weeks in the brine to cure it (using cure #1). If you are getting a fresh ham that has not been cured it will not have the traditional ham flavor. If it has been cured then you can smoke it to 145 then glaze it and take it to 160. 
     
  9. djtech2k

    djtech2k Fire Starter

    WV
    If it will not taste like a ham, what will it taste like? I didn't think it would take that long. I have heard about curing but didn't think it was necessary. So am I better off to just do one of the pre cooked hams?
     
  10. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    It will taste like pork, as in pork loin or pork chops.
     
  11. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

  12. djtech2k

    djtech2k Fire Starter

    WV
    Can you get a cured, uncooked ham and then cook it? 
     
  13. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Last edited: Nov 25, 2015
  14. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    They are out there but rare and usually a special order for guys that like to smoke their own.

    In the grocery Biz and small Butcher Shops, a Fresh Ham, is a back leg, raw, uncured and smoked or Roasted. It taste like Roast Pork, just a lot of it.

    [​IMG]

    The general term Ham, refers to a Cured, and Smoked Fully Cooked rear leg. Pink, Salty, a little Sweet and gets covered in Pineapple and Cherries. You probably have eaten these on Easter, Christmas and fried with Eggs at your local breakfast joint.

    [​IMG]

    Both above are before cooking. Notice raw skin on Fresh ham and the Smokey rind on the Spiral Ham...

    Lots of SMF members buy Fresh Hams and Cure them for whatever lenghth of time needed and Smoke them. Pops does one for Easter every year
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2015

Share This Page