Adventures in Ham

Let me just start by saying that when I hear the term “beenham” or literally “leg ham” I am expecting some sort of Game of Thrones leg. And an order of 1.5 kilos of beenham seemed to me that it would be one ham that weighed that much. Well, no. I have three small beenhams, each weighing 500 gr. Or as the meatman said to me “Perhaps they came from very small pigs” which I so did not want to hear! Luckily, I had a pair of gloves in my first aid kit and I assembled three legs of ham with clementines, fresh pineapple, mustard and cloves. Putting the cloves in was creepy. In some places, they just wouldn’t go in. I guess if you are used to cooking meat, it probably doesn’t phase you much. All covered and sitting in the fridge until tomorrow. I was worried that I didn’t have a meat thermometer. But the highly practical Dutch have figured out this little pop up gadget that is inserted in the ham and when it is fully cooked, it pops up. Weird.

In more comfortable for me cooking, tonight I made the dressing – thank you, PCC for having your recipes online! I also got everything else grated and ready for the Kale Caesar. All that remains for tomorrow are the green beans and to heat everything.

After picking up the ham, I went to De Vegetarische Slager (The Vegetarian Butcher) to pick up the bitterballen for tomorrow. Sadly, they didn’t have the party pack of 54 so people will have to make do with only 36. On my way to DVS, I ended up walking next to a lady that looked a little bit like my mom. And boy, did she sound like my mom. She was talking up a storm about the weather, the miserable grey days, how she thought it was really terrible and crossing the street, you could never be sure that cars would stop for you. I walked with her for a while and said to her that we were headed to the right time of the year, the days would now be getting longer and summer was around the corner. Which is totally something my mom would say. Just like in July she would say winter was coming, get out the fleece. And the lady said that she was 72 and she had lived a long life and had enough of this craziness that the world was coming to. I said to her that obviously she had alot left, because here she was walking around, independent. She said it was good to be reminded of that. For a moment, it was like talking to my mom. It helped too that she looked like her. After I left her company, I went to a little coffee bar and ordered a “coffee chocolate”. It is more of a party coffee than a mocha. I posted a picture of it. It reminded me of Mom because when she would really splurge, she would order a mocha and her favorite part about it was the whipped cream.

Since I was all the way over in Oud West, or Old West (really 3 km away from my hood), I decided to see if my cousin, Sjoerd, was up for a coffee. He was and we had a quick espresso while discussing the menu for tomorrow. He’s in charge of the dessert and I think he is bringing an organ meat pie with raspberry sauce or something like that. After that, back on the tram because I still needed to get beer for tomorrow. I did get beer and I managed to break a beer open in the store. The amount of glass bottles here is dangerous to someone like me. Sometimes I get so worried about knocking a bottle over, it manages to fall off the shelf. However, it must happen more often because no one made a drama out of it and my stinky dog sneakers now smell like brewery sneakers.

I finished cleaning the house tonight. If you can’t tell, I am sort of restless. I already took the dogs for their last walk. Maybe I need to go take myself for one. For Christmas, the boys are getting a chicken and a duck. Each one makes completely different noises. And they are getting the equivalent of a Slim Jim. I am really fortunate to have all of my pets. If it weren’t for them, I am not sure how functional I would have been over this past year. I was going to give the boys a Christmas bath but I decided that wasn’t really a gift for them. While thinking about this, I filled the bathtub which I have never used. It has what looks like jets in it so I pushed the button. Wow, they work – as evidenced by the water that went shooting out all over the bathroom floor and all kinds of funk came out of the jets, resulting in a second scrubbing of the tub. So, apparently, I have a jacuzzi tub. Which I will never use.

And I finally figured out how to turn the outdoor lights on. And last night, I discovered that there was closet space above my bed, that what looked like part of the wall, is in fact cabinets. It is a never ending mystery tour around here.

Think I am going to walk myself for a bit. Merry Christmas.


1 thought on “Adventures in Ham

  1. Hi dear cousin,
    Pieter and I have taken over a good Old American Christmas tradition just a couple of minutes ago: make yourself a sandwich with left over Christmas ham and mayonnaise…boy was it delicious, thanks to your fabulous Christmas cooking.
    Let me just say this about our last night’s Christmas celebration together: “Move over Martha Stewart! Who needs you when we have Caroline?!”
    It must definitely be those Mesker genes!
    Last night was very precious; thank you so much!

    Big fat Christmas kisses!

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