HOW TO HAM: Justin Brickley, senior butcher at Lyons St Butchery in Warwick shows off one his double-smoked Christmas hams.
HOW TO HAM: Justin Brickley, senior butcher at Lyons St Butchery in Warwick shows off one his double-smoked Christmas hams. Marian Faa

Hamming it up: Christmas cooking tips from the locals

IT'S THE centrepiece of any traditional Christmas spread, so it's important to get just right.

Our local chefs and butchers share their top tips on how to choose, cook and prepare a Christmas ham that will make the angels sing.

Wayne Carey - Part-owner, Carey Brothers Meats

"When choosing your Christmas ham, make sure you look for a nice, wood-smoked golden colour.

"Choose a ham with a good amount of fat - too much fat is just waste, but too little will dry out your meat.

"Make sure you buy a ham that you know has been freshly made and hasn't been sitting there for months. We make all our hams a couple of weeks before Christmas and they last right up until February.”

Justin Brickley - Senior Butcher, Lyons St Butchery

"We double smoke our hams for about 11 hours to get the flavour right through to the centre of the meat.

"Score the ham a couple of centimetres deep on the diagonal and cook until it reaches 70 degrees Celsius in the middle.”

Mark Favero - Head Chef, Belle Vue Cafe

"I like a nice marmalade, brown sugar and orange juice glaze.

"Cook the ham nice and slow, around 130 degrees Celcius to make sure the flavours come through.

"If it starts to burn up too fast, cover the ham with some aluminium foil.

"We have a hot summer Christmas in Warwick, so serve with some fresh salads like a cabbage salad or a coconut and pineapple salad and always fresh bread.”



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