This magnificent roast, featured in “The Wonders of Ham” (SAVEUR, December 2009), is simmered in beer before it’s baked—a practice favored by cooks in Savannah, Georgia. As with any country ham, this preparation calls for soaking the ham (in this case, in both water and brewed black tea) before cooking it, to remove excess salt.
This feast-worthy dish, based on a recipe in Pork & Sons by Stéphane Reynaud (Phaidon, 2007), calls for fresh ham, a succulent cut from the pig's hind leg that yields crisp skin and juicy meat. If cooking for a larger crowd, roast a whole fresh ham instead of just the shank end, and double the ingredient quantities for the glaze.
The New York City–based cookbook author Zarela Martinez gave us the recipe for this smoky, Coca-Cola-glazed ham (see "The Wonders of Ham" in SAVEUR's December 2009 issue). To cut slices of fresh pineapple into perfect circles, use a 3" round cookie cutter to trim the outer edges of the slices and a 1" round one to cut out the center.
Cured country hams can be cooked with sweet beverages, like ginger ale, champagne, or, in this case, Coca-Cola, to counteract their salty character.