1.25 kg (22 lb) boneless smoked gammon joint, soaked overnight in cold water
5 cloves
1 onion, cut into 8 wedges
2 carrots, thickly sliced
410 g (13½ oz) can black beans or red kidney beans, drained
2 bay leaves
900 ml cola
1 tablespoon dark muscovado sugar
1 tablespoon tomato purée
2 teaspoons English mustard


1.Preheat the slow cooker if necessary. Drain the gammon joint and put it into the slow cooker pot.
2.Press the cloves into 5 of the onion wedges and add with the remaining onion wedges and carrot slices to the gammon. Tip in the drained beans and add the bay leaves.
3.Pour the cola into a saucepan, add the sugar, tomato purée and mustard and bring to the boil, stirring.
4.Pour over the gammon, cover with the lid and cook on high for 6-7 hours or until the gammon is tender.
5.Strain the cooking liquid into a saucepan and boil rapidly for 10 minutes to reduce by half. Keep the gammon and vegetables hot in the turned-off slow cooker with the lid on.
6.Slice the gammon thinly and arrange on plates with the vegetables, beans and a drizzle of sauce. Serve with baked potatoes and broccoli, if liked.
7.FOR BAKED HAM WITH PARŠLEY SAUCE, soak the gammon as above and cook in the slow cooker pot with the cloves, onion, carrots, bay leaves and 900 ml (12 pints) boiling water instead of the cola
8.Omit the beans and remaining ingredients. Melt 25 8 (1 oz) butter in a saucepan for the parsley sauce. Stir in 25 g (1 oz) plain flour, cook for 1 minute, then mix in 300 ml (2 pint) milk.
9.Bring to the boil, stirring, until thickened and smooth. Stir in 1 teaspoon English mustard, 3 tablespoons chopped parsley and salt and pepper, Serve with the sliced gammon and drained onion and carrots.

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