Browned and coated in a shimmering glaze, your Easter ham is sure to be the centerpiece of your post-Lenten celebration. Easter Sunday is the time to celebrate the end of a long fast, but why do we eat ham?
As it turns out, the choice of ham, which is especially popular in North America on Easter, is more practical than religious. Lamb was just never as popular of a livestock to raise in North America as it was in Europe. While, undoubtedly, Jesus would have been more likely to dine on lamb than pork, seeing as it is against Jewish food laws to eat pork, Americans eat ham because it was what was available.
When more Europeans began settling in the America’s in the 16th and 17th centuries, pigs were more plentiful than lambs and their meat was easy to cure and store through winter, making an Easter ham the perfect and most practical way to celebrate the end of a Lent.
Today, we can’t help but carry on the tradition because ham simply tastes good and makes an impressive presentation on your Easter table. Even better, it’s easy enough for anyone to make. If you are still feeling out of your cooking comfort zone, check out this step-by-step guide for preparing an Easter ham, which includes everything you need to know from how to pick out the right ham to the perfect cooking temperature.
SWhy not stick with tradition, and try one of our delicious Easter ham recipes this year? From sweet and salty Maple-Vanilla Ham to a Whole Roasted Ham With Orange Glazewe have the best recipes your family and friends will love. For more delicious Easter ham recipes, check out our roundup of 17 Easter-perfect ham recipes.