Many people think they know how to carve a ham, but to make an attractive presentation with uniform slices it takes more than a carving knife and a little elbow grease. Forgo the spiral sliced ham and save a little money. It is possible to carve a ham to create neatly cut slices that look absolutely delectable and worthy of a fine restaurant – if you use the right carving tools and a simple but effective carving technique. Instead of hacking away at your next ham with a dull carving knife, use the following tips and ham carving tricks. It really is very easy to carve a ham and get most of the meat off of the bone in just a few easy steps.
Remove it from the Pan Before Carving
One of the biggest mistakes people make when attempting to carve a ham or any other roast or cut of meat is leaving it in the pan and struggling with tall sides, drippings, and the pan continuously slipping and sliding. Always remove the ham from the roaster before attempting to carve it. Place the ham on a large anti-microbial cutting board with grooves that will catch the juices. Carving the meat will be much easier and far less messy. A high-quality cutting board is an excellent investment that can be used for a number of culinary purposes.
Use an Electric Knife or a Sharp Carving Blade
Before getting started it is also imperative to have a sharp knife of the appropriate size. Many people try carving meat with a blade that is no sharper than a typical butter knife, and this will result in ripping and tearing it to shreds. This is fine if you are making ham salad, but for attractively presented ham slices a sharp knife is a must. Some people buy a block of knives, and they never bother to sharpen the blades. Regularly sharpen carving knives to keep them in peak working condition, or consider buying a high-quality electric model. Carving ham with an electric knife is a breeze, and once you use an electric knife you will probably never again use the manual variety for carving anything.
Positioning and Cutting
Place the meat on a large cutting board with the scored side of the meat facing upward and the shank end on your right. Use a large carving fork to hold it in place, and cut two thin slices lengthwise on the thinner side. Keep in mind that the thin side will face your body if it is from a left leg, and if it is a right leg the thin section will be on the other side of the ham. After making the initial cut, turn the ham over and position it with the cut side down and it will stay in place. The chopping of the vegetable for cooking will be efficient through the use of best knife set. The blades will be sharp-edged to cut the vegetables.
Next, approximately six inches from the end of the shank, cut straight down to the leg bone. Make another cut at an angle close to the end of the shank to make a wedge, but do not remove the wedge. Cut thin slices straight down, and run the knife parallel to the leg bone to cut away the slices. Continue this wedging and slicing process to carve the meat away from the bone until you have removed as much as possible with the knife. With this easy method to carve a ham you will not have to pick as much meat off the bone by hand, and the entire process will be easier than ever before.