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Ham Steaks With Port, Cinnamon and Maple Glaze

By 8 7
Ham
Credit: OakleyOriginals on flickr / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

This week, my man-servant brought home some ham steaks. He thought it'd be a nice change from all the holiday fare.

I agreed.

I've never been keen on ham with pineapple rings and maraschino cherries. Especially, after I found out those cherries are bleached in a solution containing calcium chloride and sulfur dioxide. And to add that unnatural, neon red colour, they are soaked in a dye known as FD&C Red 40 (along with corn syrup or other sugars).[1] Blah.

My mother almost always served ham with mustard. But it wasn't gourmet fancy mustard, just that bright yellow stuff that came out of a squeeze bottle. The thing is, plenty of mustards and maraschino cherries contain sulfites[2] and my man-servant is allergic to sulfites.

I just can't have him feeling unwell, I mean, I would need to actually do some physical work around here.

And to tell you the truth, mustard can be overpowering. It's a taste that keeps on giving, if you use too much. I could taste mustard for three days after eating my mother's ham.

LCBO at Maple Leaf Gardens

LCBO @ Maple Leaf Gardens
Credit: JasonParis on flickr / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

The Inspiration and Tweaks

If there's one place I love to visit, it's my local LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario). Every season, they put out a fabulous free Food & Drink magazine in their stores. If I miss the latest copy (or they are all snapped up), I check out their recipes online.

In the 2006 holiday edition, Jennifer McLagan posted a recipe for ham steak with port and cinnamon glaze.[3] I switched out the honey and used maple syrup instead. Also, I didn't have dark brown sugar, I had Lantic brilliant yellow sugar. I figured the maple syrup would give this glaze an earthier Canadian taste. And it did, so I thought I'd share it with you.

Ham Steak w/ Port, Cinnamon & Maple Glaze

Serves: 4 - 6 | Prep: 13 mins | Total: 40 mins

Ingredients: 

6 uncooked ham steaks (about 1/2-inch thick)
3/4 cup port
1/4 cup Grade A or B maple syrup OR honey
1/4 cup yellow sugar OR dark brown sugar (packed)
1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 med lemon = 2 to 3 tbsp. juice)
1 tsp. cinnamon OR cinnamon stick
 
Directions:
 
Offley Boa Vista 2011 Vintage Port
Preheat oven to 350 - 375 F (176 - 190 C). Note: The original recipe called for 425 F (220 C) but I found that too high. Perhaps the ham steaks used were thicker (it didn't specify).
 
In a small saucepan, over medium heat, combine port, maple syrup, sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon. Stir to dissolve the sugar and bring to a boil. Boil the glaze for 3 minutes (set a timer) and stir it often during this time. Turn off heat and set aside.
 
In a large baking dish (I use my largest Pyrex 3-quart casserole dish), arrange the ham slices so they are slightly overlapping each other. Then, pour the port-cinnamon-maple glaze over them.
 
Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, then baste the ham slices with the glaze (I just use a large spoon) and allow to bake another 10 - 15 minutes. The ham should be browned and the glaze should be bubbling.
 
Allow to rest a few minutes and serve with a side of gluten-free scallop potatoes or mashed potatoes and sweet peas.

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Comments

Jan 5, 2015 1:16am
WriterJoanne
This sounds really good. I didn't realize that about the cherries. Yuck! I only eat the real fresh ones anyway.
Jan 5, 2015 6:06pm
RoseWrites
Yeah, and I just read an article in Mic that "99% of black, canned olives are debittered with lye," according to Adin Hester, a California Olive Growers Council representative.

Go fresh or go home, I say.
Jan 5, 2015 3:41am
LeighGoessl
This does sound great!
I usually avoid those cherries because of the dye and corn syrup (really trying to rid GMOs from our diet), but I had no idea they were also "bleached in a solution containing calcium chloride and sulfur dioxide". So gross.
Jan 5, 2015 6:09pm
RoseWrites
Yes it really is odd to try and change what nature already provided us. Chemicals like these can't be good for us and might even be cumulative in the body.

Thanks again for dropping by and commenting.
Jan 8, 2015 3:40am
dannyjlong51
Looks fantastic!!
Jan 8, 2015 2:06pm
RoseWrites
Oh it is - and with only 5 ingredients in the glaze, if you have excellent port and maple syrup, it's exquisite. Thanks for dropping by and commenting and welcome to InfoBarrel!
Jan 8, 2015 2:50pm
dannyjlong51
Living in Portugal, I certainly have access to very good port. Will be trying this recipe out for sure.
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Bibliography

  1. "Maraschino cherry." Wikipedia. 30/12/2014 <Web >
  2. "Volume IV - 10.2 Food and Color Additives." FDA . 30/12/2014 <Web >
  3. Jennifer McLagan "Ham Steaks with Port and Cinnamon Glaze." LCBO | Food & Drink. 30/12/2014 <Web >

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