Spice up your Easter ham

March 20, 1991

EASTER DINNER AT most homes wouldn't be complete without ham. For a spicy, sweet flavor, glaze your Easter ham with spiced honey and brown sugar. Fully cooked, boneless hams can be reheated in a conventional oven in about an hour, depending on the size of the ham.

Boneless hams are sold in weights ranging from 1 1/2 pounds to 11 pounds. They will yield four to five servings per pound.

Honey-Glazed Ham

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1 tablespoon honey

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1 3- to 4-pound boneless ham, fully cooked

For glaze, combine brown sugar, honey and allspice in a small bowl.

Take ham from the refrigerator and place it on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the ham, not touching the bone or fat. Add one-half cup water to pan. Cover. If covering the pan with aluminum foil, leave thermometer dial exposed. Cook in a preheated 325-degree oven for 19 to 23 minutes per pound, or until thermometer registers 135 degrees. Remove cover. Spread glaze over the ham; cook an additional 15 to 20 minutes. Allow ham to stand, covered, about ten minutes, or until thermometer registers 140 degrees. Makes about 16 servings.

Squash Cups with Basil Vegetable Stuffing

2 1/2 -pound zucchini, scrubbed

2 1/2 -pound yellow summer squash

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper

1/2 cup chopped seeded tomato

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil leaves, or dried to taste

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Cut two sections, about two-inches long, from each squash. Hollow out each section to form one-quarter-inch thick cups. Steam the cups on a rack set over boiling water, covered, for three to four minutes or until barely tender.

Invert the cups on paper towels and let cool and drain. Cut enough of the leftover squash into one-quarter-inch dice to measure three-quarters cup. In a heavy skillet, cook the onion and the garlic in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until the vegetables are softened, add the bell pepper and diced squash and cook the mixture over moderate heat, stirring, until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the tomato and the basil, cook the mixture, stirring, for one minute and stir in the Parmesan and salt and black pepper to taste. Divide the mixture among the

squash cups. Serves eight. Double to serve 16.

"The Best of Gourmet; Volume V" -- Random House Books; $24.95, 1990

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