Curing a raw uncured ham steak?

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NascarDad
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2009/06/06 09:54:37 (permalink)

Curing a raw uncured ham steak?

When I picked up the pork shoulder from Pigzilla for memorial day, I also got some chops and some uncured ham steaks.

The first steak I coated in a mixture of tender quick, brown sugar, ground pepper, and ground allspice, a little sage, then added water and let it brine overnight.

When I cooked it it definitely got pink like ham, but it was way oversalted. Very tasty but far too salty. 

Most of the "curing" or brineing recipes I have found are for whole hams, not for ham steaks, which is of course why they are overkill for just a steak , even if it is a very thick steak, probably about 2 pounds or so.

I have 2 more steaks - one of which is probably at least half going  to get cut into cubes and be sacrificed for a spiedie experiment.  But that leaves me 3 or 4 pounds of ham steak left that will need  curing

Any suggestions here, roadfolk?



#1

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    PapaJoe8
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/06 15:33:08 (permalink)
    ND, those uncured ham steaks might be good just grilled like a beef steak or pork chop? Just sprinkle on seasonings of your choice. Oh, and I like your "roadfolk" deal. Ok for me to use it?
    Joe
    #2
    cy_dugas
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/06 15:36:04 (permalink)
    This would be great in beans.  Maybe cut down on the tenderquick and replace with kosher salt.  Cut down on sugar and add more cayenne.

    If you ever get it right, let us know.  You've got me intriqued.  I never thought of curing my own salt pork...

    cy
    #3
    NascarDad
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/07 00:55:24 (permalink)
    PapaJoe8

    ND, those uncured ham steaks might be good just grilled like a beef steak or pork chop? Just sprinkle on seasonings of your choice. Oh, and I like your "roadfolk" deal. Ok for me to use it?
    Joe


    I tried a few different methods with the first steak with small parts and none of them worked.  I tried treating them like a pork steak/cutlet, it got too dry and stringy.   I even tried braising but the meat really dried out and got chewy.  After the brine/cure it was really juicy and had the right texture, just way too salty. 

    By all means feel free to use roadfolk :)

    #4
    NascarDad
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/07 01:00:01 (permalink)
    cy_dugas

    This would be great in beans.  Maybe cut down on the tenderquick and replace with kosher salt.  Cut down on sugar and add more cayenne.

    If you ever get it right, let us know.  You've got me intriqued.  I never thought of curing my own salt pork...

    cy


    Yes perhaps I just used way too much salt.  If this were a rub I guess I basically made a rub good for a whole roast not a steak or ribs.

    I love the new little butcher shop out here in Goochland county.  Pricey but good, and the locally grown pork is excellent.  I can practically taste the acorns fed to the pigs in the meat
    #5
    Foodbme
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/07 01:43:41 (permalink)

    Step 1

    Buy a fresh ham leg (uncured pork), a half fresh ham, or a piece of fresh ham in whatever size you're comfortable with. I am using the term ham here to refer to the hind leg section of a pig - you must buy fresh, not already cured pork. The size doesn’t matter; buy it as big or small as you are comfortable with.

    Step 2

    Prepare the brine.
    I use a brine recipe from Michael Rhulman's book "Charcuterie" (which is excellent)
    • 2 liters of water
    • ¾ cup of kosher salt
    • 1 cup of brown sugar (1 packed cup)
    • 4 teaspoons of pink salt (insta cure #1) (4 teaspoons) A Curing Salt available at:  AmericanSpice.com
    Stir all ingredients together until dissolved. This brine can be multiplied as needed, and if you are doing a whole ham, you will probably need to double it.

    Step 3

    Place your pork in a bowl or pot that is large enough to hold the meat completely submerged in the brine, but one small enough to fit in your fridge. Add the cold brine to the pork, and lay a heavy plate on top of the floating meat to keep it submerged.
    Keep it in the fridge until done. It will cure at the rate of 2 pounds per day. A large ham will take about a week.

    Step 4

    Rinse it off and prepare it in any way you enjoy. This ham is better if smoked (see here for instructions on hot smoking a fresh ham) but you can just as easily bake it or fry off slices unsmoked, and it will still be great. It has become ham – it is done!
    Curing your own ham is pretty easy. I think it tastes better than commercial hams that tend to contain lengthy and questionable ingredient lists and when fresh pork ham is on sale, it can be very economical. Plus it's kind of neat to make your own ham!
    A last tip…if you find the ham too salty you can soak it in clean water in the fridge for a couple of hours to leach out some of the salt. I don’t tend to find that this is necessary.
    #6
    Foodbme
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/07 01:54:15 (permalink)
    Salt Cured Ham Process, (Dry Process)
    Ingredients
    2 pts CURING Salt
    1 Ham
    Instructions
    To salt down a ham you will again need a FRESH ham. If at all possible, find some Jefferson Island Salt. We have less trouble loosing hams when we use that. If not, use CURING or canning salt -- DO NOT USE IODIZED SALT. See notes above on Curing Salt. For each ham use two pints of salt. Rub salt in well to all sides of ham, filling bone cavity. I suppose that I should have told you prior to this that you have to have a salt box constructed of wood -- a very strong salt box. It may have to withstand the assault of neighborhood dogs. Box should be large enough to hold hams in a single layer. (Ours is 3'x5' on the bottom and about 2' high). 
    I suggest using extra salt to "Cure" the box for several days prior to adding the ham to draw excess moisture out of the wood. DON'T use Plywood! Salt will draw the chemicals out of the laminations. After several days, dump that salt out and re-fill. Size doesn't matter much as long as hams don't butt up against each other and it's not so small that the dogs can move it.
     
    On to curing: You will have salt left after rubbing on hams. Place a thin layer of the salt in the bottom of the box. Place ham on this, skin side down. Pour the remaining salt on the ham. Place top on box and secure. Find a handy calendar and mark down three weeks.
     
    Ham comes out after 3 weeks. For Ham Slices, Less time may be OK.

    Wash salt off ham and LIBERALLY coat with black pepper. (Use dust mask from workshop if pepper bothers you.) Place in cloth sack (old pillow case will do nicely) and hang. Do not cut for at least 6 months, 1 year is better. For Ham Slices, Less time may be OK.
    All of this should be done when the temp is 35 to 50 degrees. Good luck. No guarantees. (Sugar cure is better! Virginia or Kentucky Style.)

    post edited by Foodbme - 2009/06/07 02:20:18
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    NascarDad
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/11 22:22:48 (permalink)
    Foodbme

    Salt Cured Ham Process, (Dry Process)
    Ingredients
    2 pts CURING Salt
    1 Ham
    Instructions
    To salt down a ham you will again need a FRESH ham. If at all possible, find some Jefferson Island Salt. We have less trouble loosing hams when we use that. If not, use CURING or canning salt -- DO NOT USE IODIZED SALT. See notes above on Curing Salt. For each ham use two pints of salt. Rub salt in well to all sides of ham, filling bone cavity. I suppose that I should have told you prior to this that you have to have a salt box constructed of wood -- a very strong salt box. It may have to withstand the assault of neighborhood dogs. Box should be large enough to hold hams in a single layer. (Ours is 3'x5' on the bottom and about 2' high). 
    I suggest using extra salt to "Cure" the box for several days prior to adding the ham to draw excess moisture out of the wood. DON'T use Plywood! Salt will draw the chemicals out of the laminations. After several days, dump that salt out and re-fill. Size doesn't matter much as long as hams don't butt up against each other and it's not so small that the dogs can move it.
     
    On to curing: You will have salt left after rubbing on hams. Place a thin layer of the salt in the bottom of the box. Place ham on this, skin side down. Pour the remaining salt on the ham. Place top on box and secure. Find a handy calendar and mark down three weeks.
     
    Ham comes out after 3 weeks. For Ham Slices, Less time may be OK.

    Wash salt off ham and LIBERALLY coat with black pepper. (Use dust mask from workshop if pepper bothers you.) Place in cloth sack (old pillow case will do nicely) and hang. Do not cut for at least 6 months, 1 year is better. For Ham Slices, Less time may be OK.
    All of this should be done when the temp is 35 to 50 degrees. Good luck. No guarantees. (Sugar cure is better! Virginia or Kentucky Style.)



    I can hardly wait to try both of these.  Wish the inlaws weren't in town or I might this weekend lol
    #8
    edwmax
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/15 21:29:32 (permalink)
    NascarDad

    cy_dugas

    This would be great in beans.  Maybe cut down on the tenderquick and replace with kosher salt.  Cut down on sugar and add more cayenne.

    If you ever get it right, let us know.  You've got me intriqued.  I never thought of curing my own salt pork...

    cy


    Yes perhaps I just used way too much salt.  If this were a rub I guess I basically made a rub good for a whole roast not a steak or ribs.

    I love the new little butcher shop out here in Goochland county.  Pricey but good, and the locally grown pork is excellent.  I can practically taste the acorns fed to the pigs in the meat


    Using your current brine, maybe you only need to for a couple of hours instead of overnight.  Cut the salt if it taste too salty.
    #9
    JRPfeff
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/15 21:46:41 (permalink)
    NascarDad -

    This weekend I cut into a salted, air-dried ham that had been aging in my basement for 8 months.  The result is similar to prosciutto. 

    One key to your results will be the quality of the ham you start with.  I used Berkshire pork that was raised on a small farm in Wisconsin.



    I have a full report on my project at this link.

    Jim
    #10
    brittneal
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    Re:Curing a raw uncured ham steak? 2009/06/15 22:30:55 (permalink)

    I wached a cooking school show on PBS sat.  The topic was brining.  He did 2 items with the class.  Mahi-mahi and tender loin of beef( he mad 2 6-7 oz filets.)  The brine was 1/2 cup sugar and 1 cup salt in a quart of water.  He let it brine the fridge for 1 hour.  The browned in a hot skilled nd finished it in the oven to just past MR.  Served on on seasoned mash it looked ok.
    #11
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