Ham Shanks Braised in Cider with Cloves

Paul Heathcote serves this old-fashioned slow-cooked feast with potatoes and mustard
By Paul Heathcote
Ham Shanks Braised in Cider with Cloves
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 2
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes plus 12 hrs soaking
  • Effort: medium


  • 2 ham knuckles
  • 400 ml cider
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp muscovado sugar
  • 8 peppercorns
  • 12 cloves


1. Remove the outside skin from the ham, leaving the majority of fat in place. Cover with water in a large pan and soak for 12 hours or overnight to help remove some of the salt.

2. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/gas 7.

3. Discard the water, wash the knuckles and return to the pan, pour over the cider and top up with cold water to just cover the meat.

4. Add the onion, bay leaves, sugar and peppercorns, bring to the boil and simmer for about two hours until cooked, topping top up with water occasionally to keep the meat covered.

5. When cooked, remove the shanks and continue to lightly boil the liquid until only about a mug full of the cider liquid remains.

6. With the point of sharp knife score the fat of the ham in a criss-cross pattern, push in the cloves and brush over the cider liquid.

7. Roast in the oven for twenty minutes or until golden brown, basting occasionally with any remaining cider.

8. Serve with boiled potatoes and mustard or mustard butter.

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