Report on Alton Brown's City Ham

Discussion in 'Food and nutrition' started by Nexis, Dec 26, 2005.

  1. Steve Wertz

    Steve Wertz Guest

    On Mon, 26 Dec 2005 23:14:23 -0600, Damsel in dis Dress
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >On 27 Dec 2005 06:00:27 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    ><[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham that's
    >> packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked 'ready to
    >> cook'".

    >
    >Brined? BRINED? ;)


    Yeah - it should say "marinated" <snork>.

    -sw
     


  2. In article <AH3sf.896$M%[email protected]>,
    "Gregory Morrow"
    ....

    > And WTF is a "city" ham...???
    >
    > Is the "city" Little Rock or NYC or Venezia or *where*...???


    Basically, a "country ham" is (e.g. a Smithfield) a dry cured
    ham of traditional kind, while a "city ham" is the product you
    will usually find in city stores -- wet cured (less salty, at
    the least; possibly less flavorful, though that may be disputable).

    Country hams need some time soaked in water to extract excess salt.
    Treatment from that point may or may not be similar to wet-cured
    hams.
     
  3. Steve Wertz

    Steve Wertz Guest

    On 27 Dec 2005 06:18:29 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >On Mon 26 Dec 2005 10:13:56p, Thus Spake Zarathustra, or was it Steve Wertz?
    >
    >> On 27 Dec 2005 06:00:27 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    >> <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>
    >>>According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham that's
    >>>packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked 'ready to
    >>>cook'".

    >>
    >> It's a "City Ham" (wet cured) as opposed to a "Country Ham"
    >> (dry-cured).
    >>
    >> Why they didn't just name them Urban Ham and Rural Ham is
    >> anybody's guess.

    >
    >Then there must be one that is damp cured called "Suburban Ham".


    Those are only made by Chevrolet and are too large for most ovens.

    -sw
     
  4. On Mon 26 Dec 2005 10:28:12p, Thus Spake Zarathustra, or was it Steve
    Wertz?

    > On 27 Dec 2005 06:18:29 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>On Mon 26 Dec 2005 10:13:56p, Thus Spake Zarathustra, or was it Steve
    >>Wertz?
    >>
    >>> On 27 Dec 2005 06:00:27 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    >>> <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>>
    >>>>According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham
    >>>>that's packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked
    >>>>'ready to cook'".
    >>>
    >>> It's a "City Ham" (wet cured) as opposed to a "Country Ham"
    >>> (dry-cured).
    >>>
    >>> Why they didn't just name them Urban Ham and Rural Ham is anybody's
    >>> guess.

    >>
    >>Then there must be one that is damp cured called "Suburban Ham".

    >
    > Those are only made by Chevrolet and are too large for most ovens.


    I wonder if you can get those spiral-sliced?


    --
    Wayne Boatwright *¿*
    __________________________________________________________________
    And if we enter a room full of manure, may we believe in the pony.
     
  5. In article <[email protected]>,
    Steve Wertz <[email protected]> wrote:

    > On 27 Dec 2005 06:18:29 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >On Mon 26 Dec 2005 10:13:56p, Thus Spake Zarathustra, or was it Steve Wertz?
    > >
    > >> On 27 Dec 2005 06:00:27 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    > >> <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >>
    > >>>According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham that's
    > >>>packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked 'ready to
    > >>>cook'".
    > >>
    > >> It's a "City Ham" (wet cured) as opposed to a "Country Ham"
    > >> (dry-cured).
    > >>
    > >> Why they didn't just name them Urban Ham and Rural Ham is
    > >> anybody's guess.

    > >
    > >Then there must be one that is damp cured called "Suburban Ham".

    >
    > Those are only made by Chevrolet and are too large for most ovens.
    >
    > -sw


    And are real energy hogs when you cook them? :)

    But what about exurban hams, or maybe "metroporcine" hams
    (on the model of "metrosexual")?
     
  6. On Tue, 27 Dec 2005 04:47:28 GMT, "Gregory Morrow"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >> > This is from the recipe on the FoodTV site: *Cook's note: A city ham is
    >> > basically any brined ham that's packed in a plastic bag, held in a
    >> > refrigerated case and marked "ready to cook", "partially cooked" or
    >> > "ready to serve". Better city hams are also labeled "ham in natural

    >juices"


    >And WTF is a "city" ham...???


    See above. This is as compared to a "country ham."

    Here. From www.samcooks.com/flavor/CountryHam.htm :

    In the hoopla over the introduction of Spanish serrano ham into the
    United States a few years ago, and the gushing over Italian
    prosciuttos before that, one of the world’s great hams has gotten left
    out -- American country ham.

    Unlike the more common wet-cured ham, which is soaked in brine or
    injected with a salt solution, country ham is dry-cured and aged over
    a much longer period. "There’s city ham and there’s country ham.
    Country ham is a different animal altogether," said John Ash, Culinary
    Director of Fetzer Vineyards Wine and Food Center at Valley Oaks,
    Calif.
    (dw note: "wet-cured, which is soaked in brine..." nyaa, nyaa,
    Sheldon)

    "Wet-cured hams have a lot of water so they have a watery flavor. The
    flavor of country hams is more intense," said Eman Loubier, sous chef
    of Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. It’s not surprising that country
    ham’s flavor is so concentrated. Government guidelines require that at
    least 18% of the ham’s original weight be lost during the curing and
    aging process. Longer aging takes that figure over 20 percent.

    (end quoted material)
    The Smithfield ham (or 'Virginia Ham') is the best-known of the country hams.

    --
    -denny-
    "Do your thoughts call ahead or do they just arrive at your mouth unannounced?"

    "It's come as you are, baby."

    -over the hedge
     
  7. Nexis

    Nexis Guest

    "Sheldon" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    >
    > Nexis wrote:
    >> Let me preface this post by saying, I am *not* a ham eater. Never have
    >> liked
    >> it, except covered in bbq sauce and served on a potato roll. That being
    >> said, this ham turned out awesome! lol
    >>
    >> Here's the basics: You buy a brined ham, hock end.

    >
    > Hock... that ain't any kind of ham... ham is whole, butt, or shank...
    > ain't no other. And what do you mean brined... then sure can't be
    > cured, must be talking fresh pork.
    >


    I'm not a fan, as I said, and therefore I'm not usually in the market for
    ham. Seems to me I've heard of ham hocks plenty of times though. In any
    case, I printed the recipe which called for a "city style (brined) ham, hock
    end" and I took it with me to the butcher. He knew what I needed, and it
    looked exactly like the one in the show, and everyone loved so, hey, it
    worked for me! :)

    Happy Holidays, Sheldon.

    kimberly
     
  8. Kimberly wrote:

    >> Hock... that ain't any kind of ham... ham is whole, butt, or shank...
    >> ain't no other. And what do you mean brined... then sure can't be
    >> cured, must be talking fresh pork.

    >
    > I'm not a fan, as I said, and therefore I'm not usually in the market for
    > ham. Seems to me I've heard of ham hocks plenty of times though. In any
    > case, I printed the recipe which called for a "city style (brined) ham,
    > hock end" and I took it with me to the butcher. He knew what I needed, and
    > it looked exactly like the one in the show, and everyone loved so, hey, it
    > worked for me! :)
    >
    > Happy Holidays, Sheldon.


    Pay no attention to the attention-starved pervert. In the lexicon Pussy
    gives, "hock end" is the same as "shank end." He's just too stupid to
    figure it out. Fortunately, your butcher is smarter than Sheldon -- not
    like that's any kind of extraordinary accomplishment!

    Bob
     
  9. Denny Wheeler wrote:

    >
    > "Wet-cured hams have a lot of water so they have a watery flavor. The
    > flavor of country hams is more intense," said Eman Loubier, sous chef
    > of Commander's Palace in New Orleans. It's not surprising that country
    > ham's flavor is so concentrated. Government guidelines require that at
    > least 18% of the ham's original weight be lost during the curing and
    > aging process. Longer aging takes that figure over 20 percent.
    >
    > (end quoted material)
    > The Smithfield ham (or 'Virginia Ham') is the best-known of the country hams.
    >
    > --
    > -denny-



    Yes, this is correct for a country ham. I may be completely wrong in
    my assessment of a 'city ham', but they need to be refrigerated to keep
    from spoiling. 'Country hams' need no refrigeration as they are cured
    with salt and generally smoked. No fly that values his life would
    think about trying to pierce the tough dry skin of a country ham.

    Some restaurants/people serve sliced country ham without removing some
    of the salt. After eating a slice, there is not enough water on this
    planet to quench that thirst. I've found the best way to serve country
    ham is to place it in a skillet barely covered with water. Let it
    simmer about 7 or 8 minutes, turn and simmer another 7-8 minutes.
    Remove the skillet from the stove, dump water, quickly wipe out
    skillet, and return ham slices to the pan. Fry for about 7 or 8
    minutes on one side, turn and fry another 7-8 minutes. Delicious and
    without that raging thurst.

    YMMV
     
  10. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    Denny Wheeler wrote:
    > On Tue, 27 Dec 2005 04:47:28 GMT, "Gregory Morrow"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >> > This is from the recipe on the FoodTV site: *Cook's note: A city ham is
    > >> > basically any brined ham that's packed in a plastic bag, held in a
    > >> > refrigerated case and marked "ready to cook", "partially cooked" or
    > >> > "ready to serve". Better city hams are also labeled "ham in natural

    > >juices"

    >
    > >And WTF is a "city" ham...???

    >
    > See above. This is as compared to a "country ham."
    >
    > Here. From www.samcooks.com/flavor/CountryHam.htm :
    >
    > In the hoopla over the introduction of Spanish serrano ham into the
    > United States a few years ago, and the gushing over Italian
    > prosciuttos before that, one of the world's great hams has gotten left
    > out -- American country ham.
    >
    > Unlike the more common wet-cured ham, which is soaked in brine or
    > injected with a salt solution, country ham is dry-cured and aged over
    > a much longer period. "There's city ham and there's country ham.
    > Country ham is a different animal altogether," said John Ash, Culinary
    > Director of Fetzer Vineyards Wine and Food Center at Valley Oaks,
    > Calif.
    > (dw note: "wet-cured, which is soaked in brine..." nyaa, nyaa,
    > Sheldon)


    You need to read the sections on hams in the book by Rytec Kutas...
    instead of the above crap by some know-nothing jounalist. Wet cured
    means spray injected with nitrite solution, not just soaked in salt
    water... no commercial hams are just brined. Hams that are brined
    (pickled) only will be grey, tasteless, and are very likely to spoil.
    Soaked in salt water would be pickled, and pickled is not cured.
    Pickled is reserved for much smaller cuts of pork, like knuckles, and
    tongues... and even those are more typically nitrite injected to
    guarantee they won't spoil before the brine fully penetrates, and to
    impart flavor and color. Read Rytec Kutas' book and then you'll know
    something. Yoose as ignorant on the topic as the OP who began this
    thread... actually you are far more ignorant, because the OP had the
    intelligence to admit not knowing.

    If curing ham was as simple as soaking in a tub of salt water everyone
    would be buying fresh hams for a buck a pound and making their own.
     
  11. Tony P.

    Tony P. Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    [email protected] says...
    > On Mon 26 Dec 2005 09:47:28p, Thus Spake Zarathustra, or was it Gregory
    > Morrow?
    >
    > >
    > > Sheldon wrote:
    > >
    > >> Goomba38 wrote:
    > >> > Sheldon wrote:
    > >> >
    > >> > > Nexis wrote:
    > >> > >
    > >> > >>Let me preface this post by saying, I am *not* a ham eater. Never
    > >> > >>have liked it, except covered in bbq sauce and served on a potato
    > >> > >>roll. That being said, this ham turned out awesome! lol
    > >> > >>
    > >> > >>Here's the basics: You buy a brined ham, hock end.
    > >> > >
    > >> > >
    > >> > > Hock... that ain't any kind of ham... ham is whole, butt, or
    > >> > > shank... ain't no other. And what do you mean brined... then sure
    > >> > > can't be cured, must be talking fresh pork.
    > >> > >
    > >> > This is from the recipe on the FoodTV site: *Cook's note: A city ham
    > >> > is basically any brined ham that's packed in a plastic bag, held in a
    > >> > refrigerated case and marked "ready to cook", "partially cooked" or
    > >> > "ready to serve". Better city hams are also labeled "ham in natural
    > >> > juices"
    > >>
    > >> What are you jabbering about... FoodTV! Ahahahahahahahaha. . . . .
    > >>
    > >> "Hock" is not ham, and brining is not curing.... do you think when folk
    > >> discuss how to brine a turkey or pork chops it's about preserving...
    > >> you'd best stay far away from FoodTV, your brain is brined. <G>
    > >>

    > >
    > > And WTF is a "city" ham...???
    > >
    > > Is the "city" Little Rock or NYC or Venezia or *where*...???
    > >

    >
    > According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham that's
    > packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked 'ready to
    > cook'".
    >
    >


    Whereas a country ham is the likes of Serrano or Prosciutto. Personally
    I'll take those over a city ham any day.
     
  12. Tony P.

    Tony P. Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    [email protected]ost says...
    > On 27 Dec 2005 06:00:27 +0100, Wayne Boatwright
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham that's
    > >packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked 'ready to
    > >cook'".

    >
    > It's a "City Ham" (wet cured) as opposed to a "Country Ham"
    > (dry-cured).
    >
    > Why they didn't just name them Urban Ham and Rural Ham is
    > anybody's guess.


    Marketing. I say that because almost all marketing plays to lowest
    common denominator.

    Of course when I hear city vs. country I think in terms of attitude more
    than anything else. For instance, this is a city boy's blog:

    http://truthspew.blogspot.com
     
  13. Dimitri

    Dimitri Guest

    "Gregory Morrow" <[email protected]>
    wrote in message news:AH3sf.896$M%[email protected]

    <snip>

    >
    > And WTF is a "city" ham...???
    >
    > Is the "city" Little Rock or NYC or Venezia or *where*...???
    >
    > --
    > Best
    > Greg


    See below

    Dimitri

    http://www.hormel.com/templates/knowledge/knowledge.asp?catitemid=105&id=741&floater=disabled#types


    Ham TypesDescription
    Fresh HamsFresh hams are cuts from the hind leg that are not cured or smoked.
    They are grayish-pink in color when raw and when cooked they are grayish-white.
    Fresh hams are cooked using the same methods used for other fresh pork cuts and
    have a similar flavor to pork roast.

    Dry-Cured Hams
    Sometimes referred to as country hams, they are cuts from the hind leg of a hog
    that have been cured without the injection of water. A curing compound
    consisting of salt and other ingredients, which may include sugar, sodium
    nitrate, nitrates, phosphates, and other seasonings, is rubbed on the surface of
    the ham. The ham is then hung to dry, allowing it to age anywhere from a few
    weeks to over a year, depending on the variety of ham. Generally, the aging
    process is approximately six months. During this time the curing compound
    penetrates through the entire ham, drawing out moisture and thereby preserving
    the ham. The weight of the ham is reduced 18 to 25 percent. The loss of moisture
    produces a more intense flavor and deepens the color of the ham. Dry-cured hams
    may also be smoked. Ham that is dry cured is saltier and drier than the typical
    ham you find in normal food stores.

    Because of the lengthy curing time, country hams often form a layer of mold on
    the outside. This mold is not harmful, but is rather an indication of proper
    aging. The mold can easily be scrubbed off.
    Frequently aged ham will also develop white specks through out the meat. The
    specks do not affect the quality of the meat.

    Because of the saltiness of the country hams, they are generally soaked before
    they are cooked to help reduce the salt content. Dry-cured country hams may be
    found in a market near the area in which they are produced but typically they
    have to be special ordered. There are also dry-cured hams available that are not
    country hams, such as prosciutto ham, which is a lightly salted dry-cured ham
    that is air-dried for many months and served raw.


    Wet (or Brine) Cured HamsAlso referred to as city hams, they are cuts from the
    hind leg of a hog that have been cured by soaking or injecting with water and
    brining ingredients. The curing solution consists of water and brining
    ingredients, such as salt, sugar, sodium nitrite, sodium nitrate, honey, spices,
    seasoning, and artificial flavoring. The ham may also be cooked or smoked during
    this process. Wet cured /CITY HAMS/ are mass-produced and generally ready for
    market in one to seven days. Their flavor is less intense than a dry-cured ham.
    The city ham is the type of ham commonly found in a typical food store. It is
    popular for its pink color, moistness, and sweet flavor.
     
  14. On Mon, 26 Dec 2005 23:13:56 -0600, Steve Wertz
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Why they didn't just name them Urban Ham and Rural Ham is
    >anybody's guess.


    Urban Hams are on-Broadway, Rural Hams are off-Broadway.

    --
    -denny-
    "Do your thoughts call ahead or do they just arrive at your mouth unannounced?"

    "It's come as you are, baby."

    -over the hedge
     
  15. On Tue, 27 Dec 2005 04:47:28 GMT, "Gregory Morrow"
    <[email protected]> wrote:


    >And WTF is a "city" ham...???
    >
    >Is the "city" Little Rock or NYC or Venezia or *where*...???



    The old-fashioned ham is now called a "country" ham. It's drier, has a
    strong flavor -- a traditional ham. Like the original Smithfield hams, I
    guess.

    A "City" ham is milder, moister, more tender (mostly because of the
    moistness, I think) and is more popular with "city" people who find the
    "country" ham to be too dry and strongly flavored.

    At least, that's the current terminology I see from some mail-order ham
    places.





    Alan Moorman

    =========================================
     
  16. sf

    sf Guest

    On Tue, 27 Dec 2005 14:05:42 -0500, Tony P. wrote:

    > In article <[email protected]>,
    > >
    > > According to Food Network, "A city ham is basically any brined ham that's
    > > packed in a plastic bag, held in a refrigerated case and marked 'ready to
    > > cook'".
    > >

    >
    > Whereas a country ham is the likes of Serrano or Prosciutto. Personally
    > I'll take those over a city ham any day.


    Most American's idea of a country ham is smoked. Prosciutto and
    Serrano hams are dry cured. There's a BIG DIFFERENCE between those
    processes. Cured ham tastes raw to me, smoked ham doesn't.
    http://www.answers.com/topic/prosciutto
    http://bbq.about.com/cs/pork/a/aa112903a.htm

    Food Network's idea of City and Country ham isn't right, IMO. For me,
    City Ham is dry cured and Country Ham has been and will always be
    smoked. I will call the injected stuff Suburban Ham.

    :)
    sf
    who doesn't like prosciutto
    <ick>
    --

    Practice safe eating. Always use condiments.
     
  17. Steve Wertz

    Steve Wertz Guest

    Nothing you wrote proves your original point (or disproves ours).
    I especially like d the part about salt water brining being a
    pickle. That's a classic.

    For economy sake, commercial hams nowdays are injected with a
    brining solution containing nitrites. Not long ago they were
    simply soaked in that same solution. A brine contains salt.
    Sodium nitrite (and nitrate) is a salt.

    -sw
     
  18. sf

    sf Guest

    Who are you replying to?
    ``````````

    On Tue, 27 Dec 2005 21:41:29 -0600, Steve Wertz wrote:

    > Nothing you wrote proves your original point (or disproves ours).
    > I especially like d the part about salt water brining being a
    > pickle. That's a classic.
    >
    > For economy sake, commercial hams nowdays are injected with a
    > brining solution containing nitrites. Not long ago they were
    > simply soaked in that same solution. A brine contains salt.
    > Sodium nitrite (and nitrate) is a salt.
    >
    > -sw


    --

    Practice safe eating. Always use condiments.
     
  19. On Tue, 27 Dec 2005 23:37:09 -0800, sf <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    (to Steve Wertz)
    >Who are you replying to?
    >``````````

    Sheldon. Doesn't Steve W. usually quote in his replies? Seemed to me
    like he does/did.
    --
    -denny-
    "Do your thoughts call ahead or do they just arrive at your mouth unannounced?"

    "It's come as you are, baby."

    -over the hedge
     
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