“Courtesy of Obie-Cue BBQ Seasonings”
Obie-Cue Ham Recipe Halts Ho-Hum Ham!
Note: This recipe uses a smoker for cooking. If cooking on a gas grill click here.
Most of today’s hams are sold cured, smoked and (if you’re not too picky) ready to eat, but geeze! they are so BORING. Transforming ho-hum ham into a real treat is easy.
Ingredients: Cured shank ham (the plain-old standard ham), Apple Juice, OBIE-CUE’S BBQ BOMBER
Time: Initial overnight marination, 2 hours of spiced marination, 2½-3½ hours cook time, 30 min resting
Most conventional (cheap) hams are massively brined, because the meat market loves to sell you salt water at meat prices. The label on the ham I’m using states that “23% of the weight is added ingredients”, which is nearly 3 lbs. in a 12 lb. ham. The meat is completely saturated and doesn’t have room for more flavor or anything else.
Let’s begin by splitting the ham and stripping out the excess brine, then we’ll infuse wonderful flavor deeply into your ham.
Splitting the ham is the most difficult part of this recipe, but all it takes is a sharp, thin-bladed knife and patience. Hams are roughly oval in cross section and like our legs, the bone isn’t centered, but off toward the skinny end of the oval, meaning there’s a lot more meat on one side than the other. The shank is the knee joint, and again like your own leg, has one big bone on top and two on the bottom.
Pointing At Second Bone Extending The Cut On The Meaty Side
Look at the one bone side and probe with your knife to locate the bone. Start your cut at the bone on the skinny end and follow the bone all the way down and then back in to the center, roughly splitting the ham into halves. Skip over the two-bones and extend your cut all the way to the edge of the meaty end then back up to the single bone.
Deepening The Cut To The Bone Turning The Knife To Cut Around the Bone
Then, stick your thumbs in the cut to hold the split open and start cutting up and down the bone following it around until that whole side is freed. Repeat the procedure to completely bone your ham.
Completely Boned Ham-Two Halves Plus The Knee Joint
Removing the skin and most of the surface fat is optional, but I like to do it to improve the smoke penetration.
Drop the halves into gallon Zip-lock bags and add several cups of apple juice to both. Burp the bag to remove all the air you can, and refrigerate overnight, or at least 6 hrs. Turn the bags once or twice, when you think of it. Most of the unneeded salt will gradually move into the apple juice.
Bagged, Juiced & Well “Burped” Ready For Overnight In The Fridge
The next day, dump the apple juice, and rinse the ham. After draining for 20 minutes, thoroughly coat all sides with BBQ BOMBER. Cover, and let your ham rest for a couple of hours as it absorbs the BBQ BOMBER.
After Two Hours The BBQ Bomber Has Melted & Been Absorbed By The Ham
Build a medium charcoal fire and when it’s well-lit surround it with unlit charcoal (lump has no binders or additives to give an “off” flavor as it lights) which will gradually ignite to give long-lasting heat, and add plenty of smokewood chunks. Add more wood as needed to keep the smoke plentiful. I will use a Big Green Egg with a baffle (the plate) between the meat and the fire. If you don’t have a baffle or waterpan between the meat and the fire, you will need to rotate the ham every 30 minutes or so to keep from scorching it. Just leave the top vent open a fat crack, and close the bottom about ¾. Bring your temperature to 220-250 with lots of smoke. When your temperature is stabilized and the pit is thoroughly heated, start the two pieces with their cut sides getting maximum exposure to the smoke and cook for one hour, until they show some color from the smoke. After 60 minutes, reassemble the two halves and tie them tightly.
Hold At 240 Degrees
Reassembled & Tied To Put Layer Of Flavor In Middle Of the Meat
This is your payoff for all the work splitting the ham, because you just put a layer of smoke and spice right in the middle of the ham. Since the brine’s been stripped out, the meat has plenty of room to absorb all that delicious flavor and as your ham finishes cooking the smoke and spice flavor will infuse all through it. Continue cooking for another hour or two until a meat thermometer in center of the biggest chunk hits 145-150. (Remember, it’s already “fully cooked”) Pull your ham and quickly wrap it in foil.
Getting Close To Wrap Wrapping At 145 Degrees
Resting Under Three Layers Of Towels Finished & Ready
Let it stand at least 30 minutes to equalize temperature throughout. I like to let my ham rest in a pre-warmed ice chest so it stays nice and hot. Slice and serve, and enjoy smoky flavor in every bite!
YUM! It’s Completely Boneless For Easy Slicing
Indirect cooking or offset smoking such as on our PR, TS, SQ units, Kamado Grills and Gas Grills (click here for smoking on a gas grill)
- 1 whole brisket (point and flat) 10 to 15 lbs.
- Butcher Prime Injection
- Vegetable oil
- Seasonings Listed Below
- Parkay Margarine (Sqeezable)
Cooking temperature 250 to 275.
Approximate cooking time 8 to 10 hours.
- If you can do the following the night before the better:
- Remove the “fat cap” leaving virtually no fat on the brisket.
- At the thinnest edge of the flat cut a small chunk off cutting across the grain this way you know which angle to cut when the brisket is done.
- Mix Butcher Prime Injection in accordance with the label and inject fat cap side about every square inch ( in a grid pattern) going into the meat ¾ of the thickness and inject on the way out (mix the injection 24 hours ahead if possible for better results and keep agitated when injecting).
- Rub vegetable oil on the entire brisket. This helps to “glue” your rub to the meat.
- Rub the meat with your favorite rub. We like to layer our seasonings on brisket and enjoy a 1st layer of Obie Cue’s Double Garlic Pepper topped with Smoking Guns Hot and Meat Church Holy Cow. Another option is Obie Cue’s Double Garlic Pepper topped with Lotta Bull’s Red Dirt.
- Wrap the brisket in loosely in foil or in a foil pan and place back in the fridge fat cap up.
- Light a charcoal fire and stabilize the temperature at 225 to 250 (this lower temp allows for the heat that will be generated when you put the on).
- Add a few chunks of hickory or blend of pecan and cherry to the charcoal (no soft woods!)
- Take the brisket out of the fridge or the cooler and place on the smoker or grill COLD (see our article on smoking).
- Place the brisket with the fat cap up.
- Place a digital thermometer probe in the thickest part of the flat (it is wise to also measure the cooking grate temp for greater accuracy).
- Close the lid and leave it closed.
- Smoking of the brisket will take place in the very early stages of the cooking process (1 ½ to 2 hours).
- When the brisket reaches an internal temp of 160 degrees take it off and place it on two layers of tin foil.
- Squirt liquid Parkay Margarine on top of the brisket.
- Wrap the brisket up in the two layers of tin foil and put back in the cooker.
- Place the probe back into the meat.
- Note-Don’t freak out if the cook time stalls at around 160 degrees. This is normal.
- Bring the meat temp up to 195.
- Take the temp probe and push it in sideways into the meat in a few places. If it’s done, you should feel very little resistance when pushing the probe.
- If not, continue cooking until tender until the probe passes through the brisket like going through butter. The brisket will be probably done somewhere around 198 to 210.
- Once done, remove the brisket from the smoker or grill and open the two layers of foil and allow the steam to escape for 5 minutes. Once done wrap the brisket in a 3rd piece of foil.
- Wrap the brisket up with beach towels and place in a cooler to rest for two hours if possible.
- Unfoil the meat being careful to retain the juices in the foil. Pour the juices in a bowl. Mix the juice and if needed extend with BBQ sauce such as Eat Barbecue’s The Next Best Thing or Smokey Mountain Smoker’s Original Sauce.
- Slice in the same direction as your cut off (meat across the grain) and if needed lightly sprinkle the slices with the juice mixture.