April 04, 2010

Smoke That Ham!

The warming weather made us at Kokopelli's Kitchen feel this to be the ideal time to share a recipe from one of our favorite cookbooks, "Secrets of Caveman Cooking" by Rick Snider. We've also included Rick's descriptive of a smoker since the recipe calls for the use of one. Permission to print granted by Golden West Publishers, 4113 N. Longview, Phoenix, AZ 85014.

Is there any part of the pig that we won't barbecue? You can grill ham on a gas grill, but it's much better in a smoker. Be sure to use maple chips as a sweetener!

  • 1 (8 pound) HAM
  • 1 can (20 ounces) PINEAPPLE CHUNKS, juice reserved
  • Basting Sauce
    • 1 cup HONEY
    • 1/2 cup VEGETABLE OIL
    • reserved PINEAPPLE JUICE

  1. Light your smoker.
  2. Trim fat from ham and wash thoroughly. Mix basting sauce ingredients in a bowl and baste ham with half of it.
  3. Place ham on rack and close lid. Baste hourly for the next 4 hours. The rule of thumb is 30 minutes cooking time for every pound of ham. Don't forget to check the coals for consistent heat.
  4. Check the meat thermometer. When it reads 180 degrees and the juices are clear, the ham should be done. I always recommend making a small incision to check for doneness.
  5. After removing ham, place pineapple chunks on skewers and place on grill (if using wooden skewers, soak for 20 minutes before using). When you're done slicing the ham and ready to serve, retrieve pineapple and serve hot with ham.
Serves 8.

  • Smokers
    Getting serious, are you? The real caveman likes fires. Sure gas grills are fast, clean and efficient, but so are car washes. The difference between gas grills and smokers is like a power car wash versus handwashing from a bucket in your driveway. The outcome is about the same, but the slower method can be more fun!

  • Now, cavemen aren't usually a patient group. They can't stand still for too long because they never know when a T-Rex will show up. They usually like everything quick (which also explains sex) as a safety precaution.

  • But let's say you cave is a safe haven and you have an afternoon to spend around the fire without having to constantly stir the pot. A smoker provided a slow, steady heat that deepens the flavor. Just don't check on it too often because it takes 15 minutes to restore maximum heat. Hourly basting is enough.