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Effortless Easter Ham Means Less Stress

4/4/2014, 12:49 p.m.
This year, make your Easter ham effortless by ditching the oven and using your slow cooker instead. While most people ...
Sweet Southern Slow-Cooker Ham

(Family Features) This year, make your Easter ham effortless by ditching the oven and using your slow cooker instead. While most people think about slow cooking for staples like chili and stew, it’s also perfect for center-of-the-plate feasts — like an Easter ham.

Using the slow cooker, you can minimize both prep time and cleanup time, leaving plenty of room in the day for church, hunting eggs and enjoying time with your loved ones.

Ham is a tradition for many families this time of year, and because it pairs well with a multitude of ingredients, you can create a unique dish every time.

For a fresh spin on the classic ham, try this Sweet Southern Slow-Cooker Ham recipe from the National Pork Board. Apple cider and bourbon (or vanilla extract, if you prefer) combine to create a rich flavor complemented by the sweetness of brown sugar.

Round out your Easter menu by pairing your ham with classic sides such as oven-roasted carrots, asparagus wrapped in bacon and mashed sweet potatoes.

To get inspired by more ham and Easter meal ideas, visit PorkBeinspired.com or Facebook.com/PorkBeinspired.

Easter Ham Pin-spiration Sweepstakes

Enter the National Pork Board’s Easter Ham Pin-spiration Sweepstakes at PorkBeinspired.com/EasterHam for the chance to win an Easter gift basket with everything you need for this year’s celebration.

Sweet Southern Slow-Cooker Ham

Yield: 12 servings

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 4 to 8 hours

1 bone-in fully cooked ham, about 5 1/2 pounds

1 cup apple cider

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

1/3 cup Kentucky bourbon

1/4 cup honey

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

4 fresh thyme sprigs

Place ham in large slow cooker. Whisk cider with brown sugar, bourbon, honey and mustard. Slowly pour over ham. Scatter thyme sprigs into slow cooker.

Cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours, or until very tender. Remove ham to rest on cutting board. Pass remaining cooking liquid through fine mesh sieve into saucepan. Simmer for 10 minutes or until slightly reduced. Carve ham into serving pieces. Brush ham pieces with cooking liquid before arranging on platter. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Note: For a non-alcoholic alternative, replace the bourbon with 1/4 cup water and 1 tablespoon vanilla extract.