Okay, that is a big promise to live up to but I adore this ham and truly believe it delivers on it’s promise. I actually intended to share this recipe last Friday, but um … I failed to take it out of the freezer in time. Shockingly, a 10 pound ham doesn’t defrost overnight. 🙂
Ham and Easter seem to go together, so I have been saving this recipe for almost a year. It is honestly one of my favorite recipes and the ham is so incredibly tender that it falls apart. So no beautiful ham slices, but trust me – this is definitely one of those times where taste trumps appearance. We may eat with our eyes, but after one bite, you really won’t care what it looks like! And it’s not ugly by any means, we are just more accustomed to ham slices and this is too tender to slice.
This ham is boiled in a mixture of vinegar of water, which sounds strange at first but it totally works. For those of you who are not big vinegar fans, it can also stink up your house a bit while it cooks. I like vinegar, so it doesn’t bother me. However, I do recommend you boil this the day prior to serving and finish baking the next day.
Now some of you may be thinking—Bleech! I don’t want to eat vinegary ham for Easter. Don’t worry, I’m not done yet. The ham bakes in a yummy mixture of brown sugar and Coke. You won’t taste the vinegar; I promise.
Honestly, I don’t mind the slight vinegar taste the ham picks up, so I always freeze portions that haven’t been baked in the brown sugar mixture to use in scalloped potatoes, navy bean soup, and various egg dishes etc. Nibble on some ham after you boil it, and you can decide whether to set some aside as is.
A Few Special Notes
You must use a bone-in ham, such as a butt or shoulder (may be labeled as a shank). You also cannot use a spiral cut ham. Otherwise it will dry out. You can boil this a day or two in advance of serving, which makes it super convenient when you’re serving it at a group gathering. Because you boil the ham versus baking it, you will need a very large pot.
The Most Tender and Delicious Ham … Ever
- 10 pound precooked bone-in ham
- White distilled vinegar approximately 8 cups
- 16 cups Water
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 12 oz can of Coca-Cola
- 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons ground dry mustard
- Place the ham in a large pot and cover with 2 parts water to 1 part vinegar until the ham is covered by at least an inch or two of liquid. Bring to a slow boil and cook for approximately 3 hours (without a lid) or until the meat falls off the bone. Depending on the size of your ham, you may need to adjust the length of time you boil your ham. You should not be able to remove the ham without it falling apart.
- Carefully remove the ham and cool for 30 minutes or until you can touch the ham without burning your fingers. Shred the ham or cut into large chunks and place in a large container and refrigerate. I save a cup or two of the ham broth to use to make gravy. Otherwise discard the broth and bones.
- Place ham in a 9×13 baking dish (You may not need all your ham). In a small bowl, combine Coca-Cola, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar and ground mustard together. Pour over ham. Cover with foil and bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour.
- You can also reheat the ham in a crockpot, which is what we did during the holidays. Our oven was already full, so this was just easier. We put the ham and brown sugar coke mixture in the crockpot on low about 3 hours before serving.