No one bakes a ham just like the ones at the nationwide chain called “Honey Baked Ham.” That hasn’t stopped people from trying, however, and one of our favorite resources, who lends considerable talent to the effort, is our “knock-off queen,” recipe detective Gloria Pitzer. Here is her version of that honeyed ham.


1/4 cup, dark corn syrup
1 pound, honey
2/3 cup, butter

In a small, heavy saucepan combine the three ingredients. Bring to a boil. Stir constantly over just enough heat to keep the mixture at a very gentle boil for 15 minutes. Remove the glaze mixture from high heat, but keep the mixture warm – just barely simmering – over hot water in the top of a double boiler (so it won’t harden while ham is cooking, between bastings). Cook’s Note: If you don’t have a double boiler, place the glaze mixture in a heat-proof mixing bowl, over (but not in) a saucepan containing a couple of inches of simmering water.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. For half of a semi-boneless, fully cooked ham (approximately 4 to 5 pounds), place the ham cut-side down in a shallow baking pan. Score the fatted sides of the ham in a diamond pattern, inserting a whole clove in the center of each of the scored sections (“diamonds”) of the fat. Place the prepared ham in the preheated oven, and baste the surface of the ham with the simmering glaze, using about 3 tablespoons of the mixture, every 10 minutes for 1 hour and 15 minutes (at 350 degrees), or until the honey glaze becomes candied but not overly browned. [It will harden while cooling.]

At end of the baking time open the oven door, and turn on the broiler heat just to candy the honey coating of the ham. Alternatively, use a propane torch (like the one used to melt the sugar on top of crème brulee) to candy the honey crust. Allow the ham to stand for 20 minutes before carving.

COOK’S NOTE: Allow one-half pound of ham per serving.