Rum Regards/Let’s Get HAMmered?

November 2011

This happened.  Then Jono’s friend sent him an email proposing they eat a ham soaked in rum, so instead, Jono emailed me…

To The Loveliest Lady in the Whole Wide World,
[ok, I may be embellishing the email intro just a tad]

Apparently “rum ham” is a reference to It’s ‘Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ I’m unaware of, and although [my friend’s] preparation technique sounds atrocious, I now want to make a ham with some sort of rum-sugar-cinnamon glaze. Any way we could make this happen?

Rum Regards,

Jono

Of course we could make that happen, but I couldn’t stop at the ham.  I wanted an entire rum themed meal…

The Rum Regards Menu

Black Forest HAMmered with an Apple & Beet Compote
Smashed
Sweet Potatoes with Grated Pecorino Cheese
Buzzed Sprouts with Slivered Almonds
Sauced Chocolate Coconut Cake
Spiked mulled cider

Had there not been good friends, dancing dates and brunching dates all the weekend long, this would have been a more homespun ham roasting experience, but using the precooked ham served us really well under busy circumstances.

There was some debate and hesitation as we leaned over the skillet of sprouts.  Add rum?!?  Why not?!?  We went for it, and they were delicious!  The combined natural spice of the under appreciated veggie and the added flavors really harmonized and completed the overall theme.

Let's-Get-HAMmered

However, rum and chocolate for the dessert course was an easy decision.  Dessert was my only solo effort.  Other than that, Jono had a tipsy hand in all the other aspects of the meal.  Go team!

The Recipes

Spiked Mulled Cider

Ingredients

1 Quart local apple cider
1 cup Spiced Rum
2-3 small local apples
cinnamon sticks
nutmeg dash
1” chunk of fresh ginger
A handful of fresh cranberries, cut in half
4-5 cloves
1 organic orange, peeled, sliced

For the Cider

Combine all of the above in a crockpot and allow to mull as the rest of the dinner comes together.  Serve with dessert.  [Full disclosure?  We drank red wine with dinner.  It just went so well with the flavors, I couldn’t resist].  Feel free to add an extra splash of fresh rum to the hot bevvie if you want a smidgeon of an alcohol content.

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HAMmered Black Forest Ham
With Apple & Beet Compote

Ingredients

1 small, all natural, preservative-free, precooked, black forest ham “nugget”
(the package actually called it a nugget)
½ cup water
¼ cup organic brown sugar
2 organic fuji apples, peeled and sliced
1 large roasted beet, peeled and sliced
½ cup fresh cranberries, sliced
dash of cinnamon
dash of ground ginger
zest of one orange
½ cup rum

Directions

To Roast the Beet

Wrap the beet in tin foil and place in a pan to catch the juices.  Heat the oven to 425 F.  Bake the beet for about one hour or until soft.  Remove from the oven, and allow to cool before peeling and slicing.  Set aside.

For the Compote

Heat the water and brown sugar over medium-high heat until the sugar is dissolved.  Reduce heat to medium.

Add the apple and beet slices.  Stir continuously.

Add the cranberries and spices and stir to combine.

Meanwhile, slice the ham, wrap in foil and place in a baking dish.  Warm in the oven or microwave, depending on your preferences.

Once the apples are soft, remove from heat and mix in the rum.

Serve warm over black forest ham slices.

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SMASHED Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients

2 large sweet potatoes
2 Tablespoons organic unsalted butter
1 Tablespoon spiced rum
2 Tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 Tablespoons organic brown sugar
1 Tablespoon heavy whipping cream
~1 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
Dash of cinnamon and nutmeg, to taste

For the Sweet Potatoes

Peel and rinse the sweet potatoes.  Cut them into 1-2” chunks.

Bring a pot of water to boil, and add the potatoes.  Boil for a couple minutes, and then reduce to a simmer.  Continue to simmer until the potatoes are soft.

Drain the water and return to low heat.

Stir in the butter, rum, maple syrup, brown sugar and cream.

Use a mixer or food processor to puree the potato mixture until creamy.

Lastly, sprinkle with the cheese and spices before serving.

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Buzzed Sprouts*
*This is more of a guide than a recipe.

Ingredients

1 little mesh bag of Brussels sprouts
Olive Oil
Fresh ginger, grated
A handful of slivered almonds
Splash of Spiced Rum
A dash of cinnamon
A dash of nutmeg

Directions

Wash the Brussels Sprouts.

Bring a saucepan of water to boil.

Add the Brussels Sprouts and cook until bright green and slightly soft.

Allow to cool slightly.

Slice the sprouts.

In a large skillet, heat 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat.

Add the Brussels sprouts, stirring constantly.

Add the almonds, and continue to stir.

Once the Brussels sprouts have begun to brown, add the ginger.

Turn off the heat.  Add the splash of spiced rum.  Stir to combine.

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Sauced Chocolate Coconut Cake

Ingredients

6 eggs (local/free-range), separated
2 cups organic evaporated cane juice sugar
2 cups whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup pure cocoa powder
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
zest of one organic orange
2/3 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 Tablespoons spiced rum

Sauce

1 can (12 ounce) evaporated milk
1 can (14 ounce) coconut milk
5 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted
1/3 cup local heavy whipping cream
2 Tablespoons spiced rum

For the Cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Butter a glass 9×13 baking pan.

For the cake, in a large bowl combine flour, cocoa, spices, baking powder and orange zest.

In a medium size bowl, combine the milk, vanilla and rum.

Set both aside.

Place egg whites in a clean bowl and beat at high speed until peaks are formed.

Turn the mixer down to medium speed and gradually add the sugar to the egg whites.

Once the sugar is dissolved, add egg yolks and beat for 3 minutes.

Continue beating egg white mixture on medium-low speed and add flour and milk alternately until well blended.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Leave the cake in the pan.

While the cake is still warm, punch holes in cake with wooden skewer.

Combine the sauce ingredients and pour evenly over the cake.

Place the cake in refrigerator to cool until ready to serve.  The longer it soaks, the better the burst of rum flavor in each bite!

Dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Serve.

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Fin.
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