How to BBQ Smoked Ham
When it comes to outdoor cooking, barbecuing smoked ham is a true delight for meat lovers. The combination of smoky flavors and tender meat makes it a popular choice for gatherings and special occasions. In this article, we will explore the process of barbecuing smoked ham and provide you with some expert tips to ensure your dish turns out perfectly.
Choosing the Right Cut of Ham
The first step in preparing a BBQ smoked ham is selecting the right cut. While many cuts are suitable for smoking, a bone-in ham is often preferred as it adds extra flavor and helps retain moisture during the cooking process. Ensure that the ham you choose is fully cooked, as smoking is essentially a process of heating and adding flavor rather than fully cooking the meat.
Preparing the Ham
Before placing the ham on the barbecue, it’s important to prepare it properly. Begin by removing any excess fat from the surface, leaving a thin layer for added flavor. Score the ham by making shallow cuts in a diamond pattern. This allows the smoke to penetrate the meat and enhances the presentation when served.
Next, apply a flavorful rub to the ham. You can make your own using a blend of herbs, spices, salt, and sugar. Alternatively, there are many pre-made rubs available in stores that work exceptionally well. Massage the rub onto the surface of the ham, ensuring it covers all areas. Let the ham sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes to allow the flavors to infuse.
Setting up the Barbecue
Now it’s time to set up your barbecue for smoking. If you are using a charcoal grill, arrange the lit charcoal on one side of the grill and place a drip pan filled with water on the other side. This indirect heat method provides a consistent temperature and prevents the ham from burning.
If you have a gas grill, preheat it to a low temperature and make use of the side burners to create indirect heat. Place a smoker box or a foil packet filled with soaked wood chips directly on the burners or grates to generate smoke. Hickory, apple, or cherry wood chips work well with smoked ham.
The Smoking Process
Once your barbecue is set up, it’s time to start smoking the ham. Place the ham on the grill grates, directly opposite the heat source. Close the lid to retain the heat and smoke. Maintain a consistent temperature between 225°F and 250°F throughout the smoking process. Use a thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the ham, aiming for around 140°F.
The smoking time can vary depending on the size of the ham and the temperature of the grill. As a general rule of thumb, allow approximately 30 minutes of smoking time per pound of ham. However, it’s essential to rely on the internal temperature rather than time alone, as this ensures a perfectly cooked and safe-to-eat ham.
Glazing the Ham
During the last hour of smoking, it’s an excellent opportunity to glaze the ham and add a sweet and sticky coating. While there are numerous glaze recipes available, a classic combination of brown sugar, mustard, and honey works wonders. Make sure to brush the glaze over the scored surface of the ham, allowing it to caramelize and create a beautiful crust.
Serving and Enjoying
Once the ham has reached the desired internal temperature and has a delicious glaze, remove it from the barbecue and let it rest for about 15 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a moist and flavorful ham. Serve the smoked ham sliced and enjoy the delightful combination of smoky flavors and succulent meat.
BBQ smoked ham is a versatile dish that can be served as the centerpiece of a festive meal or used as a flavorful addition to sandwiches and salads. Its rich taste and tempting aroma make it an instant crowd-pleaser.
“Barbecuing smoked ham is an art that requires patience, attention to detail, and a love for authentic flavors. The result is a mouthwatering dish that impresses even the most discerning palates.”
So, if you’re looking to add a touch of smokiness to your next outdoor cooking adventure, try barbecuing smoked ham. With the right cut, preparation, and smoking technique, you’ll create a dish that will have everyone coming back for seconds.