The Best Wild Pig Cured Ham

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This ham has to be one of the most delicious hams I have ever made. I cannot recommend it enough. We enjoyed the ham sliced on toasted sourdough with Dijon mustard and pickles. Simple was best because the flavor of the ham was so mouthwatering. 

I used the rump and top round cuts from the back quarter of the wild pig I shot at our May 2022 Wild Pig Camp. We still have room for you to sign up for the next Wild Pig Camp so click here. You could go home with 1-2 meat pigs to experiment on your own with. 

This curing process is called Equilibrium Wet Brining and the result is a tender, juicy, and succulent ham. The recipe requires some math and exact measurements, but I provided some great tools below to help you with the ratios. Be patient and enjoy the result

Serving Size: 4-6

Time to make: 6 days 

Equipment: Scale, Non Reactive Bowls, Smoker

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The Best Wild Pork Cured Ham

Recipe by Justin TownsendCourse: Dinner, LunchCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Difficult
Servings

5

servings
Prep time

144

hours 
Cooking time

2

hours 

This ham has to be one of the most delicious wild hams I have ever made. I cannot recommend it enough. We enjoyed the ham sliced on toasted sourdough with Dijon mustard and pickles. Simple was best because the flavor of the ham was so mouthwatering. 

Ingredients

  • 1210 grams wild pork roasts (2.67 lbs)

  • 3 ¾ cups water

  • 5.29 grams pink curing salt #1

  • 52.94 grams sea salt

  • ¾ cup maple syrup

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • For the Glaze
  • 1 Tbsp butter

  • ¼ cup maple syrup

  • ¼ cup honey

  • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard

  • 1 tsp Harvesting Nature’s Big Game Blend

Preparation

  • I gave you an exact amount on the meat weight I used in ratio to the pink curing salt, water, and sea salt. I used the Meat Curing Calculator Tool to determine the ratios. Be sure to use the Equilibrium Wet Brining method. I had to increase the water percentage from 40% to 75% because of the amount of water I needed to completely cover the meat in my container.
  • Measure the water first. Put the meat in the container first, add plain water to cover and then adjust the Water % for the tool. Note: I also use grams because it is easier to convert and get a more exact measurement. 
  • Once you figure your ratios, combine the water, salt, and curing salt in a non-reactive bowl (Glass or Plastic). Stir until all the ingredients are incorporated.
  • Mix in the maple syrup, bay leaf, mustard seeds, and garlic cloves. Mix well
  • Add the meat to a non-reactive bowl or container (plastic or glass) and cover with the liquid. You may need to use a weight of some sort to keep the meat submerged. I used an empty mason jar.
  • Place the container in the refrigerator. A general rule for curing is 2 days per pound for small cuts and 3 days per pound for larger hams and shoulders. My pork was roughly 2.7 lbs so I rounded up and determined 6 days of curing was needed. I double checked my curing time using the calculator at the bottom of this website. The website accounts for the thickness of the cut. 
  • On the 6th day, remove the pork from the refrigerator and wash it with cold water. Discarde the brine.
  • Return the meat to the container and cover with clean cold water. Return it to the refrigerator for 24 hours. 
  • Bring a smoker to 325 degrees.
  • Remove the meat from the refrigerator and pat dry. 
  • Cook in the smoker for approximately 1 hour and 35 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. After the first hour, glaze the meat every 15 minutes on both sides. See below for glaze directions.
  • Once the meat reaches 145 degrees, remove from the smoker and let rest for 15 minutes. Slice and enjoy!
  • For the Glaze
  • Bring a small sauce pan to medium heat on the stove. 
  • Combine all ingredients and mix well. 
  • Use a basting brush to glaze the meat every 15 minutes on both sides after the first hour. Be careful not to burn the glaze.

Justin Townsend

Justin (Choctaw) is an avid hunter, angler, and chef whose passions for the outdoors lead him to create Harvesting Nature in 2011. He continues to hunt, fish, and cook all while sharing his experiences with others through film, on podcasts, in print, and with recipes. He also proudly serves in the United States Coast Guard in Key West, FL.

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