HALF PRICE OFFER Subscribe to Yorkshire Life today CLICK HERE

Six of the best Christmas hams from Yorkshire

10:55 09 December 2013

Ham - Photo by Andy Bulmer

Ham - Photo by Andy Bulmer

Archant

Tony Greenway finds out where to go for the best Christmas hams

On Christmas Eve in our house, before the fighting starts, there is a period of delicious calm, writes Tony Greenway. It’s when you’ll find me in the kitchen with Nigella. Well, Nigella doesn’t make a personal appearance, you understand — although, frankly, it IS Christmas and I’ve been a good boy all year, so there’s no reason why she shouldn’t.

No, what happens is I get out a Nigella recipe for an aromatic Christmas ham which involves scoring the meat with a knife to make a criss-cross pattern on the top; then decorating it with cloves and making a glaze with cinnamon, redcurrant jelly, red wine vinegar and paprika. This particular ham is an integral part of Christmas Chez Greenway and as festive as carols, a real tree, lights, Yule logs, gingerbread houses, Perry Como’s Season’s Greetings album and re-runs of The Great Escape.

For some strange reason, though, cooking and glazing the Christmas ham has become My Job, in the same way that summer barbecues and removing spiders are also My Job.

I don’t mind taking charge of the Christmas ham, though, because a festive table looks bare without it. Plus it keeps the kids occupied as they enjoy studding it with cloves and pouring over the glaze. Crucially, the ham also tastes rather fabulous and is wonderful cold, so it’s very handy for Boxing Day when the in-laws descend.

Getting hold of great quality meat is important, mind you. So, where to go for the best Christmas hams? I thought you’d never ask...

Lishman’s of Ilkley
An award-winning butcher with a country-wide reputation, using high quality meat from local farmers. At Christmas, customers on the mailing list will be sent an order sheet so you can get your ham that way — or order sheets are available to pick up in the shop. lishmansonline.co.uk

Home Farm, Beningbrough
This is a fab and friendly farm shop near York in the grounds of Beningbrough Hall, on the exit road (NB: you don’t need to visit Beningbrough Hall to visit the Home Farm shop). Run by Lucy Jackson, it’s well-stocked with everything — including lovely local uncooked ham joints which come vacuum-packed. ‘People can then put them in the oven and glaze them and stud them with cloves,’ says Lucy. homefarm-beningbrough.co.uk

Mackenzies Yorkshire Smokehouse
A smokehouse and a smoker and curer of food, which supplies national restaurants, hotels and retail outlets, among others. A producer of superb dry cured bacons and hams, Mackenzies also has its own restaurant and a shop. At the time of writing, its online service was not available while its website was being revamped but this would be running in time for the Christmas rush. So you’ll be able to place your orders online, too. yorkshiresmokehouse.co.uk

Yorkshire Party Company
You may not want to do all the ham cooking/dressing business yourself in which case the Yorkshire Party Company will take care of that for you. You can order whole baked ham either smoked or unsmoked, on or off the bone, studded with cloves and prepared with a sticky glaze of orange, brown sugar, honey and grainy mustard. Plus, just in case you’re not feeding an army this Christmas, the Yorkshire Party Company also offers half hams. Customers can taste test from the YPC’s stall at the Camp Hill Christmas Fair and can pick up produce from the YPC premises right up to lunchtime on Christmas Eve. The last delivery, meanwhile, goes out on the Friday before Christmas. What a good idea. yorkshireparty.co.uk

Kendall’s Farm Butchers
Based in picturesque Pateley Bridge, Kendall’s is an award-winning traditional butchers established 40 years ago by the current owner’s grandfather, Thomas Frederick Kendall. It has embraced the 21st century, though, with an online ordering service on its website (and you can also ring to place orders). Uncooked and cooked hams are available. kendallsfarmbutchers.co.uk

Castle Howard
The farm shop at Castle Howard is worth a visit if you are searching for Boxing Day ham and you don’t need to pay an entry fee to the estate. A trip to this fine country house at this time of year never fails to get me in the festive mood. castlehoward.co.uk

Related articles

0 comments

Shop with us at Great British Life

More from Food & Drink

Tuesday, May 17, 2016
Lamb, wild garlic and wild asparagus

Jo Haywood takes a walk on the Wild side in Harrogate

Read more
Yorkshire Restaurants Harrogate
Monday, May 16, 2016
Craft beers are increasingly popular in local pubs

Where do you stand on fizzy, corporate beer from overseas? Personally, I think it has its place — that place being my fridge, writes Tony Greenway.

Read more
6 of the best Pubs and Bars
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Wagyu steak

Jo Haywood charts the rise of Yorkshire wagyu

Read more
Yorkshire Food
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Shoppers crowd the market

A community comes together to celebrate the finer foods of life, as Lucy Allen reports

Read more
Yorkshire Food Ilkley
Monday, May 9, 2016
Nasturtium, a colourful edible flower

Add something extra to a favourite family dish with a sprinkle of well chosen leaves

Read more
Tuesday, May 3, 2016
Lightly grilled fruit to finish

There are healthier food choices to see you through a working day, as Esther Leach discovers

Read more
Leeds Yorkshire Food
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Carl and Donna Brayshaw with author Nick Stead

Villagers can now borrow books down at their local

Read more
Pubs and Bars
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Yorkshire cookery writer Sam Stern.

To launch our new foodie Q&A column, we catch up with young York cookery writer Sam Stern

Read more
Yorkshire Food
Monday, April 25, 2016
Best Western Plus Dean Court Hotel

Located on York’s most historic street, The Dean Court Hotel has established itself as one of the most luxurious and finest hotels in the city centre.

Read more
Friday, April 22, 2016
The Crown & Cushion

4 courses with perfectly paired wines only £34.95 per person.

Read more
Thursday, April 21, 2016
The Punchbowl Inn

Join guest chef Stephanie Moon for A Celebration of Spring Dinner on Thursday 28th April.

Read more
Thursday, April 21, 2016
The Oak Tree Inn

Stay at The Oak Tree Inn this Spring with this stunning offer.

Read more
Wednesday, April 20, 2016
Malton Food Lovers Festival

We are all foodies in Yorkshire, and it's no surprise our diverse variety of food festivals are some of the most well attended in the country

Read more
Things to do in Yorkshire Yorkshire Food
Friday, April 15, 2016
The Carpenters Arms

Enjoy Bed & Full Yorkshire Breakfast from £95 per room and a free bottle of house wine with your dinner!

Read more


Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad



Follow us on Twitter


Like us on Facebook


Local Business Directory

Yorkshire's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area



Search For a Car In Your Area

Property Search