Succulent ham is a Christmas staple, but one can serve it even on “off-peak” season like summer.
Purefoods recently launched its Fiesta Ham Smoked Boneless variety—sliced ham made with the same technique as the Bone-In Fiesta Ham traditionally served during the holidays, but with an earthy smoked flavor.
According to category manager Mirabel Calaranan-Rosar, Purefoods sold around two million pieces of Fiesta Ham last year, with stocks running out by November.
The Pear-Shaped Ham and Jamon de Bola are among the bestsellers in the Fiesta Ham line. It comes with a pack of pineapple glazing to be added in the cooking to give the ham a sweet taste and syrupy sheen, and keep the meat moist.
The Smoked Boneless sliced ham, sold a kilo per pack, has citrusy mango-kiwi glaze. It is still slightly sweet, but with a refreshing fruity note.
Chef Jessie Sincioco made several dishes from soup to dessert using the Smoked Boneless Ham and served it at lunch at Rockwell Club. She also shared the secret to tender, caramelized ham: maple syrup.
“The best way to cook ham at home is to pan-fry it in some hot butter. When the ham is done, drizzle it with maple syrup and quickly take it off the heat. It will be a little sweet but not syrupy. Serve this as filling for pan de sal or ciabatta, with sliced tomatoes.”
Sliced ham could also be incorporated in fried rice, she added. To make, add finely diced ham, carrots, scrambled eggs and green peas to your sinangag and you’d get fried rice similar to yang chow.
Celebrity moms Suzi Entrata-Abrera, Christine Jacob-Sandejas, Barbie Almalbis-Honasan and Danica Sotto-Pingris presented chef Sincioco’s Smoked Boneless Ham menu.
Abrera, a fitness-oriented mom, said kids can be extremely picky with food and a cute presentation is always a come-on. She serves her husband Paolo and kids Leona, Jade and Nela minced herbed ham in crepe pouches tied with onion stalk, plus a kebab of bite-size ham, tomatoes and zucchini. These appetizers are also great for parties, snacks and baon.
Still looking like the charming band vocalist from the ’90s (Hungry Young Poets and Barbie’s Cradle), Honasan recommended spaghetti with ham-and-cream sauce for kiddie parties. Simple pasta dishes are a hit with her husband Martin and their two kids.
For something fresh and light, lithe mom Jacob suggested serving a salad of tossed greens with slices of passion fruit and ham. The passion fruit seeds give it a crunch and the ham provides just enough saltiness. Passion-fruit vinaigrette was used as dressing.
To warm the tummy, chef Sincioco served thick, creamy potato soup, with ham slices on the bottom of the cup. This was followed by the main entree, Ham Wellington—savory ham and mushroom baked into a pastry puff.
The meal was capped with a surprise dessert—mini fruit pies with ham topped with whipped cream.
You can take the ham on your road trips.
Cream of Potato & Ham Soup
50 g potatoes, cubed
2 cloves garlic
1 pc onion, chopped
50 g Fiesta ham, diced
2 oz white wine
½ L chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
Boil potatoes until soft. Drain. Sauté garlic and onion. Add fiesta ham. Deglaze with white wine. Season with salt and pepper. Add chicken stock.
Grilled Ham & Vegetable Kebab
Cut Fiesta Ham into 1-inch strips, grill. Cut into bite-size pieces, season with salt, pepper and pesto. Cut into bite-size pieces aubergine, zucchini, broccoli florets, red bell pepper, tomato, onion. Grill. Skewer vegetables and ham. Drizzle with pesto before serving.