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Asian-Inspired Glazed Ham

Happy Mother’s Day!

Don’t you just love Mother’s Day?  It’s that one day of the year where you get to sleep-in then lie in bed while the kids bring you breakfast in bed and hand over lots of heartfelt gifts while telling you just how amazing and special you are.  Don’t you just love it?  Was it like that at your house?  Because it wasn’t like that here.

Flowers from the garden

Flowers from the garden

Firstly, Carl got up and went down to the beach for a swim.  ‘I have to’, he cried, ‘because I have a genetic condition’.  Yes, a few months ago Carl was diagnosed with some hereditary disorder called iron overload.  It has a more sophisticated title of haemochromatosis.  Apparently, the only way it can be treated is to donate blood regularly and/or to exercise to burn the iron out of your system.  Well you can’t argue with medical advice so Mother’s Day had to be a day to burn some iron.

Flowers from my cousin and don't anyone touch my champagne

Flowers from my cousin and don’t anyone touch my champagne

Arabella hadn’t come home.  She’d sent a text message at 10pm the night before advising she was staying with a friend and would be going straight to work the next morning and would be home around lunch time which of course would be when I’d finished every task required to host a lunch for 20 family members.  ‘It’s a regular job, mum, I can’t get out of it’.

But Archie was in greater disgrace because he woke up advising he was off to do a shift at the cafe where he’s a waiter and a performer.  ‘I have to work, mum, you don’t know how desperately I need the money.  I’m broke’.  Archie’s always broke.

‘But today’s Mother’s Day, Archie, and everyone’s coming for lunch’.

‘Yeah, I know but I can’t help it, I really need the money’.

‘It’s for my birthday too, Archie; we’re celebrating that as well.  But don’t worry, enjoy your day at the cafe’.  So off he went to work and I thundered around the house getting everything ready for my 20 guests, seething that the uni students had made me such a low priority.  Then the little guy came up to me with his face all lit up and he handed me a gift he’d purchased at the school’s Mother’s Day stall (it goes without saying I’d given him the money to buy me the gift).

Preparing the ham

Preparing the ham

Alfie is a little gem when it comes to these stalls because they’re 90% filled with trash but over the past few years he’s managed to sift through and find me things I’d really love.  Unlike his naughty friend who I minded on Friday afternoon.  He asked me to look after his gift and although it was wrapped I could tell instantly it was a mug and I hoped and prayed Alfie hadn’t bought me a mug because I have more than enough mismatched mugs in my cupboard as it is.  But this boy had punched a hole in the wrapping so he could get to the chocolates that were inside the mug and he’d eaten them.  And he proudly told me.  So I told him off and said, ‘That is disgraceful.  Your mother gives you money to buy her a gift and you eat half of it?’

He looked at me stunned and said, ‘I didn’t eat the mug’.  As if I thought he’d eaten the mug.

‘But the gift looks terrible.  You’ve ripped all the wrapping and you’ve eaten the chocolates’.

‘But mum doesn’t like chocolates’.

‘That’s not the point.  After you give her the gift then you can ask her if you can have the chocolates; but not eat them before you have given them to her; that’s not very nice’.  But I don’t think I had much of an impact on him as he just took off to climb a tree without a hint of remorse but it made me ever so grateful for Alfie who had decided I would like something for my ‘baking’.  He chose these measuring cups for me.  I love them and they will be so handy.  I love how they all stack together and there are six measures all together.  Alfie was very proud of his purchase and my reaction.

My Mother's Day present

My Mother’s Day present

Getting ready for the lunch wasn’t too exhausting as everyone was bringing something.  One of my sisters brought something to have with drinks and she also brought a lovely bottle of champagne.  I was responsible for the main course and I glazed a leg of ham that was served with juices from the cooking process and crispy potatoes cooked in duck fat.

Asian-Inspired Glazed Ham

Asian-Inspired Glazed Ham

My mother made two salads to have with the main course.  Arabella was very pleased one salad was quinoa and the other was kale.

Quinoa, Pomegranate and Mint Salad

Quinoa, Pomegranate and Mint Salad

Kale salad with cranberries, radish and pinenuts

Kale salad with cranberries, radish and pine nuts

My cousin, Pip made a gluten-free orange cake with cardamon creme anglaise and my other cousin, Meg made a chocolate, almond and date torte from my blog!

Chocolate, Almond and Date Torte

Chocolate, Almond and Date Torte

One of my sisters made afghan cookies and florentines to have with coffee (but we didn’t serve any coffee).


Afghan Cookies and Florentines

Can you believe, that Archie dropped in just as I was serving lunch.  He had a large bunch of apologetic roses in his arms telling me I’d made him feel guilty.  I thought he was home for the day but he actually had called in on his lunch break so he wasn’t able to join us for lunch.  Never mind, I had a glimpse.

Individual Chocolate Mousse

Individual Chocolate Mousse made by my cousin, Pip

Asian-Inspired Glazed Ham

Serves:  Makes enough for an 8kg leg of ham

Degree of Difficulty:  1/5

Cost:  We were cooking for 20 guests and I believe a leg of ham, although it seems a large outlay, works out to be quite economical as it seems to go a very long way.

  • 1 leg of ham (around 8kg)
  • cloves
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce (buy G-F to make this a gluten-free dish)
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 tbs char siu sauce
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp five-spice powder

Preheat the oven to 160C.

Use a small knife to cut around the end of the ham in a zigzag patter.  Run your fingers under the skin and carefully lift off in one piece, removing as little of the fat as possible.  Score the fat lightly, avoiding cutting through to the meat, in a diamond pattern, then stud the centre of each diamond with a clove.

Place the ham on a wire rack in a roasting dish with one cup of water in the bottom of the dish.

Combine the glaze ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine.  Brush over the ham, reserving any excess.

Place in the oven for 1 hr.  During the cooking process continue to baste with remaining glaze and spoon juices over ham.  Remove ham from oven, cover with foil and rest for 20 minutes.  Serve with pan juices that have been reduced by boiling in a small saucepan for 2-3 minutes.

This recipe has been adapted from Delicious Christmas Cookbook.

So that’s a wrap on Mother’s Day, 2013.  I look forward to hearing how the day mapped out for you.




  1. Aah Archie. What a lad. The roses probably cost him his day’s pay! 🙂 I’m so glad you had a good day Charlie, you had me worried for a while there! The ham looks glorious, and didn’t Alfie do well with the measuring cups! We always received the most rubbish things from the school stalls – one year Pete got a golf ball washer – and he doesn’t play golf! 🙂

  2. Happy Mother’s Day! Oh Charlie!! The little guy saves the day! And lol at the friend who ate all the chocolates. I wonder if your message got through to him? I’m starting to think Mr NQN has haemochromatosis with his pathological urge to exercise 😛

  3. How sweet is your little boy. Just more proof that we don’t have them for long so we need to enjoy them. I think those measuring cups are so cute. I’ve never seen them before. His happiness at your reaction was priceless ill bet. The roses were a sweet touch too. No one understands until they are a parent themselves I guess.

  4. What a chaotic Mother’s Day! I hope you were able to relax and enjoy at least a bit of it 🙂 I hope that little boy’s mother reads your blog, then she will know what a selfish little boy she is raising. Alfie seems like such a sweetheart, and those measuring cups are adorable. Have a wonderful day Charlie 🙂

  5. That ham looks great! And that’s more than enough to feed a crowd with plenty of leftovers. And of course the ham bone for some nice soup — my favorite part! Sorry your Mother’s Day wasn’t as top notch as it should have been. All your kids are great, though (the 2 oldest are just being their age), and Alfie is a gem.

  6. Congrats on your great combined birthday and Mother’s Day spread. It looks like the food contributions from the rest of your family did you proud. And Happy Birthday.

    Alfie is a great little shopper managing to find something so cute, thoughtful and practical. How nice of Archie to bring you the roses. 🙂

  7. Happy Mother’s Day, Charlie! Love Alfie’s thoughtfulness in knowing what his mom loves. Love Archie’s guilt in those dozen roses. And the food and family. So wonderful to have these gifts, too, on Mother’s Day.

    I have my boy home from college and my eldest and her beloved will be here for a grill-out this evening. The other daughter will, I expect, phone from Wisconsin.

  8. Happy Mother’s Day Charlie! Everything looks delicious and the measuring cups are fantastic, this Archie is a gem 🙂

  9. What a lovely Mother’s Day spread to shared with your family Charlie and what a darling gift from Alfie and how fabulous that Archie brought you flowers.
    Fabulous ham!
    🙂 Mandy xo

  10. wow, what a feast!

  11. Alfie made the greatest choice! What a naughty little boy that other child was. Glad you briefly had all your kids home for lunch.

  12. Those are the greatest measuring cups ever, not to mention a very thoughtful gift. I’m glad your Mother’s Day turned out well in the end- you deserve it!

  13. Now that is one gorgeous ham, Charlie. Looks like you roasted it perfectly. With a bit of that glaze lingering, it will make a fantastic soup. In spite of having to entertain, I hope you enjoyed Mothers Day and your birthday celebration. Glad that you 3 kids made it, even if Archie could only stay briefly. 🙂

  14. Happy Mother’s Day Charlie! Looks likes it was a fun one. My older had to do community service today (because he waited until the end of the semester to get it done) and is studying for an AP exam tomorrow. Nothing ever stops for mothers does it?

  15. Great mothers day present, well done Archie. How fab that one of the cousins had made a dessert from your blog posts, I love that. Hope you had a fab mothers day even if you did end up doing all the work! GG x

  16. Oh, those measuring cups looks pretty darn cool – like those little stacking Russian doll things. They should make a novelty cup inside the smallest one which is about 1cm tall :D.

    Hope you had a nice day Charlie – that ham looks insanely delicious!

  17. In spite of your protestations, I think you thrive on doing too much. 🙂 You could do with some lessons on relaxing, methinks. What an incredible meal, Charlie. That ham looks so good. Now it’s all I want to eat.

    I’ll have to invite 20 or eat ham for the next 189 days.

    I love your blog.

  18. Hope you had a lovely mothers day, charlie! xoxo

  19. Aww Alfie is so sweet! I have a set of those and at first I didn’t really think they were great but now I love them. It’s so much easier to measure than the cups with the lines.
    What a lovely feast you had!

  20. Thank goodness for the Guilt Trip- where would us Mothers be without it? Those measuring cups are cute and definitely better than most school stall offerings 🙂
    Your ham looks glorious! So juicy and just that bit burnished on the edges- yummo!
    My family has that blood condition too, but where my aunt lives they will take her blood but not dispose of it, she has to get rid of it herself as a bio-hazard!?! As she can’t just Chuck it in the wheely bin, my aunt waits until night then digs it into the garden- she has the best roses in town! 🙂
    Happy happy birthday sweetie, hope it’s full of friends and fabulous food like mine was xox

  21. Ooh, that’s the same torte that I have on my blog, and it’s SUCH a winner, ain’t it? 😀

    I think I needed some of Alfie’s talents as a kid. I’m 99% sure the stuff I picked up at school fete trash and treasure stalls for my parents were, indeed, from the “trash” section. 😉

  22. Perfect present from Alfie. Its disappointing when kids don’t make an effort…..glad to see Archie came to the party in the end. The table setting looks lovely and it is so much nicer when everyone brings a dish. That torte looks great must give that a go. The ham glaze sounds delicious too.
    Hope you had a lovely Mother’s Day.

  23. What a beautiful meal, Charlie. And your ham was surely a hit! Your children, guilty or not, obviously adore you. 🙂 Alfie is a little gift himself, isn’t he! I hope you had not just a great Mother’s Day, but a love family time! ox

  24. Sorry I’m late but Happy Mother’s Day!!! I think it’s even more important for you because you are probably one of the most understanding, selfless and amazing mothers 🙂 Awww Alfie is such a precious little one! He did a great job picking out a present that you will not only like but it’s also practical! Great work kiddo ~

    Hope you had a wonderful day the ham looks delicious too xox

  25. Oh, bless Alfie. I have the white version of those measuring cups and I love them too! No blessings to your older two but at least Archie tried 🙂 Happy Mother’s Day Charlie!

  26. Oh bless that little man – those measuring cups are gorgeous. Now tell me, how do we end up always hosting Mothers Day at our houses. Every year is the same in our family, everyone comes to my house and I rush a round like a mad woman to prepare. Even though they bring stuff, the house needs to be cleaned etc etc. You are probably just like me and too soft to say no 🙂 Now on to even more important things HAPPY BIRTHDAY you sneaky bugger you. when is the actual day? xx

  27. Aw that little fella is so sweet ad thoughtful. Glad your day went well Charlie. x

  28. Happy Birthday Charlie! That was quite a feast. Have not made a ham in ages and yours make me want to make one now. I see a pot of soup with the ham bone.
    Those are the cutest and cleverly designed measuring cups, I am sure they will be used frequently if not daily.

  29. JO BABY says:

    You can’t imagine how envious I am of the Babushka measuring cup dolls, Charlie. I eyed them up and down more than once when I took my class to purchase their presents. I debated whether it would be good form to phone my daughter’s teacher to hint loudly to her that I would LOVE them (in white please to go with our kitchen). Good form or no, I picked up the phone. Unfortunately, the seniors had bought presents early and headed off to sports. I did receive beautiful candles to use in bubble baths that daughter and I share in winter (was also dreading mismatched Mumsy mug) but am on the lookout at kitchenware shops for the bloody Babushkas that I can’t live without!

  30. Happy Mothers Day for yesterday!! Isn’t it wonderful when the whole family gets together and everyone makes something? Your feast looks amazing!

  31. Alls well that ends well Charlie. I am so glad it all turned out well for you…hugs to your little guy! He made me smile all the way through the post. And what a funny little guy his friend is…hehehehe!!! Don’t you at times wish they all stayed that little? Your kids are sweet. Archie too….those roses must have cost him quite a few pennies.

  32. Rotten kids anyhow…don’t feel bad, I got ‘Happy Mother’s Days’ from lots of people yesterday but not one from my daughter… 🙁 Oh well… Had a pretty nice day, though… Your ham looks amazing!!! Those measuring cups are adorable! Happy Birthday and Happy Mother’s Day!!! Hope your day was fabulous!! xo

  33. What a feast! Gorgeous ham and I love the sound of that quinoa salad. I sympathize about the kids…sometimes it is like herding cats, and I only have one!

  34. Happy Birthday and Happy Mother’s Day! Your ham looks so juicy and delicious! Hope you had a wonderful day…from the spread on the table I would! 🙂

  35. Aw, sweet Alfie!!! Sounds like a darn good Mother’s Day…and your ham looks amazing! xx

  36. Oh my goodness, I am drooling over all of this yummy food! I hope you had a lovely Mother’s Day, although I can’t imagine it being anything less with all of this food around 😉

  37. I was getting pretty jealous reading your first paragraph… that didn’t sound like my Mother’s Day either! It sounds like yours ended up being really nice anyway and mine was too, although not in a Mother’s-day related kind of way. Thank goodness for school, I got a card from my eldest thanks to her English teacher!

  38. Happy belated Mother’s Day Charlie(!!) and very cute measuring cups.

    Oh and crispy potatoes cooked in duck fat???…dear Lord that sounds good.

  39. Hi Charlie, happy belated Mother’s day. Lovely present, look so cute.
    Your glazed ham look absolotuly delicious, very professional like from 5 star hotel. The rest of the spread look delicious too. You’re an awesome mom. 🙂

    best regards.

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