Country Ham Pâté is a really great recipe for a simple-to-prepare, delightful appetizer spread that can be served on crackers or crusty bread. On a platter with pickled vegetables, it would be a perfect addition to your holiday snacking.
Country Ham is a variety of cured ham that is found predominately in the Southern United States; it has seen a rising popularity in recent years which has resulted in it being available more readily in most areas of the country. Similar to prosciutto, country ham is often (but not always) smoked. The salt cured and aged ham can be eaten just as it is, without further cooking. And that’s what I have done with this recipe.
The ham that I used was not a smoked variety, but was prepackaged, pre-soaked (to remove some of the preserving salt), and pre-sliced; it’s sold in my area as biscuit pieces (for country ham and biscuits). For a less expensive option, many brands of country ham sell “seasoning pieces” that are less than perfect scraps (normally used to add flavor to soups, stews and vegetables); they are perfectly fine to use for this recipe since it’s ground anyway.
The ingredients are combined in the bowl of a food processor and pulsed until smooth. In addition to the ham, the recipe contains horseradish, Dijon mustard, a bit of mayonnaise, shallot, dry sherry, capers and thyme. The resultant spread may be kept refrigerated in an airtight container for two weeks…perfect to make ahead for holiday noshing.
Do, try it!
p.s.: If you can’t find Country Ham in your area, you can use cooked ham.
- 8 ounces country ham
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1½ tablespoons prepared horseradish
- 1½ tablespoons Dijon mustard (I used a whole grain Dijon)
- 1½ tablespoons dry sherry
- 1 shallot, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1 teaspoon capers
- 1 teaspoon dry thyme leaves
- ground black pepper
- Combine all of the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until smooth.
- Serve with crackers or crusty bread.