We take our ham seriously and it shows in the Berkshire-breed pork we select, renowned for great taste and tenderness. Known as Kurobuta pork in Japan, this heritage breed makes spectacular ham. Because of the marbling typical of the breed, we don't need to inject these hams with dubious ingredients to boost their moisture and texture.
Instead, following age-old techniques, we rub salt and sugar on the shank and butt of a hog and then smoke it over real applewood chips. There are no artificial flavors or liquid smoke, and no nitrates, nitrites, or phosphates used to make this ham.
Cured on the bone, the flavor is incredible. It’s a simple process, but the results are undeniably delectable.
Fully cooked, this half ham is ready to be the centerpiece at your table.
Our mission is to find farmers that share our vision of a more humane and sustainable way of rearing livestock. We respect our place in the food chain, and see farmers as true stewards of the land and environment. This is why we build real relationships with our farmers, and work only with those who respect nature and focus on the best animal welfare practices.
Our Berkshire hogs are happy hogs, raised by a cooperative of small farms in Missouri at the foot of the Ozark Mountains. This group of about a dozen family farms raises Berkshire and cross breeds, which we refer to simply as “heritage.” The hogs are fed on pasture, with access to water and supplemental grain consisting of corn, soybeans and rolled oats. No pesticides, animal by-products or fishmeal are allowed. The majority of the farms are sustainable “circle farms” that raise and grind their own feed for the pigs.
Families of pigs are left together, to forage and frolic outdoors in pasture land. The indoor spaces offer at least 15 square feet of space per animal, and sows are never put in gestation crates.
The cooperative is strict about banning the use of antibiotics and hormones* on each farm and limiting the number of hogs the farms raise. They seek to add another farmer to the cooperative before they add more pigs to any one farm, making the process more humane for all concerned.They are paid a premium for their humanely-raised pork, making the small family farm a profitable business, and proving that there might be a future in the old breeds after all.
*USDA regulations prohibit the use of hormones in pork.
Since it’s fully cooked, ham can be served cold, at room temperature, or heated, with or without glaze.
To heat, first, bring the ham up to room temperature. We recommend removing it from the fridge at least an hour before you plan on heating it. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Place the ham on a rack in a heavy-bottomed roasting pan with the fat side up. Pour ¼ to ½ inch of water, or liquid of your choice, to the pan.
Place a sheet of parchment paper over the ham then cover tightly with aluminum foil. Heat in the oven until the internal temperature reaches about 140 degrees (about 10 minutes per pound of ham). An oven-safe probe thermometer works well for this - poke it into the thickest part of the ham without touching the bone. Heating time will vary depending on your oven and size of the ham.
Remove the ham from the oven and allow it to rest for a few minutes, tented with foil. As long as you keep your eye on it, this is a safe way to heat the ham without drying it out.
For the spiral ham, simply place it on a sheet of heavy-duty foil, with the cut side down. Wrap the ham tightly with foil and bake at 300 F until your meat thermometer registers 140 degrees inserted into the thickest part of the ham.
For added flavor and moisture protection, you can apply a glaze during the last 30 minutes of heating time. Ariane, D'Artagnan's founder, suggests a simple mixture of one part soy sauce to one part honey, but don't be afraid to get creative. A balanced glaze will contain a sweet element like honey, brown sugar, apricot preserves or pure maple syrup and a savory or acidic element such as mustard, soy sauce, vinegar or even your favorite Bourbon.