Cola Ham

Serves 8 with lots of leftovers

By the delicious team

Takes 30 minutes to make, 3 hours 30-40 minutes to cook, plus cooling. This sweet and savoury combination is a modern classic.


  • 3kg unsmoked gammon from the thick end of the leg, deboned and rolled (ask your butcher to do this)
  • 4 litres cola
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 2 star anise
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 15 cloves
  • 4 tbsp clear honey
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp English mustard powder
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar


  1. Place the gammon in a large deep pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, then drain. Return the gammon to the clean pan and pour over the cola, topping up with cold water to cover if necessary. Add the onion, star anise and peppercorns.
  2. Bring to the boil, then turn down the heat, cover with a tight-fitting lid and simmer for 3 hours or until the ham is cooked through. Remove the ham from the liquid and leave to cool. (Discard the liquid.)
  3. Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan180°C/gas 6. Once the ham is cool enough to handle, carefully remove the skin using a small, sharp knife, leaving a good even layer of fat. Score the fat in a diamond pattern and stud each diamond with a clove.
  4. Mix the remaining ingredients and brush generously over the ham. Put it in a tray and bake for 20-30 minutes, basting 2-3 times with the leftover glaze, until fabulously sticky.

Nutritional info

Per serving (based on 14): 460kcals, 26.7g fat (8.8g saturated), 50.3g protein, 4.7g carbs (4.6g sugars), 6.6g salt, no fibre

Chef’s tip: Cook the gammon up to the end of step 2 up to 2 days in advance and chill, covered.

Wine Recommendation: The sweet notes here demand a soft, juicy red ─ try a ripe Pinot Noir from Australia or Chile.