Christmas Traditions

If you are over 40, you may realize like I do, that it is fastly becoming our generation’s duty to carry on with Christmas traditions.  Christmas cards is one of those things that I see as an endangered art. Isn’t it wonderful, however, to get something in the mail that is not a bill or junk mail?  I love it. Moreover, there is no better way to show you care or brightness a day by posting a small note of care to someone that reminds them to have a Merry Christmas. I’m reminded of my favorite Christmas show, “It’s  Christmas Time, Charlie Brown” whenever I send a card. Charlie Brown knew the meaning of Christmas, and the value of some of its sweetest traditions.

So why not slow down and send at least a dear friend a note this Christmas. You’ll be glad you did.

Christmas foods are another holiday tradition we value here in the South. There is a long standing live for the southerner and his pork. Nothing is better than a fresh country ham soaked in a lard can on Christmas morning. My no made it just this past weekend for our early family Christmas brunch. This recipe is hundreds of years old, and still just as good. Remember, it all starts with a fresh, well preserved smoked country ham. Find a local or well known farm for this special dish!

Boiled Country Ham (the old time way)

First, select your whole country ham.

Put the ham in a lard can. (They are a little hard to find).

Cover the ham with water completely. You will probably have to cut the hock off to fit in the can. Cover the can.

Allow the can to come to a rolling boil and then let it boil about 40 to 45 minutes.

Take it off and set the can on a lot of newspapers and two blankets. Then completely wrap the entire can in first newspapers and bring the blankets all around the can. Tie with cord the wrapping to keep it tight.  Allow the can to set for at least 24 to 30 hours.

Then take it out.  It will still be hot.  This has been the cooking process.  Let it cool.

Then slice it and ENJOY! This will keep for weeks in the refrigerator.