Heavenly Ham

I won’t have a bad word said against Nigella Lawson. Whoever can come up with a recipe for a huge hunk of meat flavoured with my addiction ( full fat cola) and glazed in two kinds of sugar (and a little spice) can be my BFF forever!
And for anyone who is a bit dubious about trying this I urge you to give it a go! It converted everyone who tried it at the Herniman House last Christmas and I’ve been begged to make several this year! And if you are really unsure just make a small one, last year I bought a 1kg gammon for less than £5 in a supermarket, and that was just before Christmas, and the recipe is easy to halve. However I was shouted at a lot for not making enough. Give it a go….you know you want to!


2kg gammon
2 litres cola (your favourite brand, MUST be full fat)
1 onion, halved
1 tbsp black treacle
1 tsp English mustard powder
1 tbsp Demerara sugar
Handful cloves (optional)

If you think you’re gammon is going to be too salty place it in a saucepan and cover with cold water, and bring to the boil. As soon as it comes to the boil turn off the heat and drain the water away.

Put the gammon in to a saucepan, skin side down, and pour over the cola, it should cover it as much as possible, but if it doesn’t then just remember to turn it halfway through cooking. Add the onion and two cloves and bring to the boil.

Turn heat down so its gently simmering and leave to cook for 2 1/2 hours (remember to turn if needed). If you put the gammon in straight from the fridge, you may need to leave for an extra 20 minutes or so to make sure it’s cooked through.

Preheat the oven to gas mark 9 / 475*f / 240*c

Take the ham (it’s gammon when it’s raw and ham when cooked, unless you’re American when it is always ham – thanks Nigella for that!) out of the cola and leave it to cool until it is comfortable to handle.

Slice the skin and most of the fat from the top, leaving just a thin layer of white fat, and score this in a criss cross pattern to make diamond shapes.

If you want to use cloves you then stud the middle of each diamond with a clove.

Then brush over the fat with the treacle, sprinkle with the mustard powder and then sugar, and place onto a foil lined tray, or a disposable foil tray. You don’t have to, but unless you have a big desire to soak and scrub you’re baking trays I really recommend lining with foil!

Bake in the oven for 10 minutes until sugar has caramelised and formed a gorgeous crust. It will of course look burnt but that’s because of the black treacle.

Try to let other people try some so you can enjoy all the compliments, although it is difficult to share!

This is lovely both hot and cold

Mrs H xxx

Decorating the Herniman House for Christmas

It’s Chrisssssssssssssstmaaaaaaaaaaaaaassssss!

I love Christmas more than any other time of year, and I am that really annoying person that starts counting down the days from September…or earlier!

I love the build up, the planning, the baking, the decorating, the shopping, the telly specials, the lights….there’s not much about Christmas that I don’t love….except wrapping the presents… I HATE wrapping, I’m very bad at wrapping. Mr H on the other hand is exceptionally good at wrapping, his presents for me arrive under the tree looking like they have come from a film set, mine for him arrive looking like the bad elf had a tantrum and ran loose with a roll of paper and three rolls of sellotape. Sorry Mr H!

Decorating our home is always a big deal for us, I have a countdown just to decorating day and this year was no different, and we had a new home to decorate, after moving in October. There’s lights and tinsel galore! But there’s also rules!

Rules for decorating the Herniman Home:

1. First there’s the food that you need to accompany Christmas decorating night. A very important factor to any evening.

A big platter of ‘picks’. Cheese, cold meats, crackers, salmon and cream cheese, pickles, whatever you fancy, its a bit of an echo of post Christmas day meals, but it means that you can eat as you decorate and pick at it throughout the evening.

The 'picks' platter

2. Secondly, you must be accompanied by the cheesiest sing along Christmas music that you can find, usually the music channels are good for this as you get a good mix. Sing loudly, and dance as you decorate. And usually a decent Christmassy themed outfit is required, this year it was a candy cane striped jumper.

3. Then the final rule is cram as many lights into the room as you can. Of course you can’t all be blessed with lighting designer husbands, but at Christmas its pretty easy to do. I LOVE fairy lights….and as you can see even the telly has been anointed with the Christmas lights.


4. You have the ‘Big Switch On’ and snuggle down on the sofa watching disney’s The Santa Clause. This is the only film to be watched straight after decorating (although if you’ve got time you can watch as many as you can afterwards!), drinking your favourite holiday tipple (usually a cherry brandy and coke for me, but this year it was just coke!), and finishing off the food platter. Or starting that tin of chocs if you’ve finished your platter!



Happy decorating!

Mrs H xxx

Welcome to the Herniman House


I’m Mrs H and I live in South Wales in the UK with Mr H.

I’m all about family, food and crafting when I can, too much tv and not enough reading.

This blog will be a diary, a recipe book, a craft record and stuff in between. I can’t promise how often I’ll update or how interesting it will be but I’ll do my best!

For those who may have followed my other blog, the first few posts will mostly be reposts from before, mainly so I can keep everything in one place. so far I’m finding this site much easier to use, which hopefully means I can update more! So please bear with me through the repeats and I’ll try and include some new stuff.

We’re expecting Baby H in May 2014, so there should be plenty to keep us busy!


Mrs H xxx