Two Men, Two Pits and a Blog

What To Do On Black Friday: Maple Glazed Ham!

It was a good day as days go. Plumes of cherry wood smoke in a cold November breeze. Black Capped Chickadees flirting to and IMG_5472fro, snatching seeds from the feeder. A pond frozen over, hard now, and awaiting its impending snowfall. A gentleman of leisurely BBQ, I crossed my legs and shifted slightly in my chair, and watched the day unwind, patron to the pit. A day where many folk I know, and few hundred million I don’t, dare the frothy seas of consumerism, shoulder-to-shoulder, seeking out what ever it is they could live without any other day but this. I don’t get it people. I don’t get it because there is no question the proper thing to do on Black Friday, iffin that is you have it off. And that is to smoke a ham of course! So pull up a seat and a hot brew, and we’ll tell you a little more about the process, and how it went, this heady business of smoking a ham.

Our Black Friday Ham started innocently enough, with a humble spiral cut procured from the refrigerated aisles of a local grocer. A tip of the hat to the deli lady there, and a sampling of her chip dip, I made haste for the door, ham tucked under my wing like an NFL full back. I was off in a cloud of camel dust, you might say. Or would be I suppose, iffin I lived in the desert. And come to think of it, drove a camel there. Anyways, when I got home, the ham was lovingly rubbed down with brown sugar on each flap of meat, then hit with a little Suckle Busters Competition Rub, for an additional depth of seasoning to the flavor profile. And I took my sweet pit boy time with it, too, doing it right, making sure not a slice of precious ham went unloved.

The pit was preheated to 250, and the cherry wood smoke had thinned out some by the time I placed the ham on the top grate. I chickadeesbasted it down with a little apple juice, and gently placed on the huge, enameled lid of the Weber Smokey Mountain. Cherry wood smoke soon was aloft, and for the next three hours, and maybe even longer than that, the world gently twirled. The aromas of sizzling ham and cherry wood, oh what a fine and pleasant respite it was from the retail gods and the consumeristic melee thrashing about the city. And there was great novelty too,  in not being a part of it.

Now you might be asking, why smoke a ham if hams come already smoked? Well, trust us when we say, by double-smoking your run-of-the-mill ham, you will aptly up the flavor of the beast by ten-fold. And nary will you encounter a finer prize. The meat can take it. Nay, it  wants it. It craves smoke like a woman desires more shoes. I don’t get it either. We like to use fruit woods on ham, but hickory, or pecan, or others are just as well. And we basted the ham in its own juices from time to time too, giving it some love, and some attention. An hour before it was done, we brushed on the maple and brown sugar glaze, which ushered it by the arm to the next level of optimum hamhood.

Maple and Brown Sugar Glaze

  • 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Apple Juice
  • 1 TBSP Mustard

When glazing the ham, open all the vents on your pit, maximizing air flow there so to get it good and hot. This will help in the caramelization of the sugars. We will turn an eye if you need to do this part of the process in your oven. No one needs to know. Whence the ham looks right, and smells right, and samples correctly as per your pit master privilege, plate up the succulence at once, and offer it unto your loved ones. And then tarry in the wake of deeds well done, smiling faces, and the aromas of a perfectly execute ham.

Like I said, it was a good day, as days go. Amen.


Cherry Smoked Spiral Cut Ham with a delightful Maple and Brown Sugar Glaze. You can do other things on black Friday I suppose, but why…

37 responses

  1. That looks damn fine my friend. I can almost taste the smoky goodness…

    December 2, 2013 at 4:14 pm

  2. Reblogged this on Hey Sweetheart, Get Me Rewrite!.

    December 2, 2013 at 4:18 pm

  3. I love how your world gently twirled while others were like whirling dervishes in the pits of consumerism. I think your approach to Black Friday is the one for me. Your ham sounds delicious too.

    December 2, 2013 at 6:00 pm

  4. Wonderful recipe the ham with that sweet glaze is great. I would definitely make this ham on Black Friday and I gladly would stay away from shopping,

    December 2, 2013 at 9:49 pm

  5. You make it look so easy and so very yummy.

    December 2, 2013 at 11:03 pm

  6. Liz

    So glad that not everyone shops on Black Friday. Smoking a ham sounds much more sane. The only pepper spray is what you add to the glaze, haha.

    Did you really smoke a ham after eating a turkey the day before? You are my heros!

    A ham was the first meat we smoked. Seemed harder to mess up than something that hadn’t been cooked yet. Next time we try it, we’re using your glaze recipe for sure. (btw, love ” iffin “)

    December 2, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    • Come to think of it, we did do turkey and ham, back to back. Not a bad way to pass a couple of days either! Feasted we did!

      Happy turkey day, Liz, btw, better late iffin never!

      December 3, 2013 at 9:50 am

      • Liz

        pssst…did you get the pingback from food for fun?

        And you must be loving the leftovers!

        December 3, 2013 at 10:05 pm

  7. I’m not even a ham lover but this looks amazing!


    December 3, 2013 at 10:07 am

  8. Delightful indeed! Now, what did you ‘do’ for Cyber Monday?
    ALOHA, Auntie Doni

    December 4, 2013 at 9:22 am

  9. Hang on while I take a bite of my computer monitor.

    December 4, 2013 at 3:41 pm

  10. Now I know what to to cook for Christmas.

    December 4, 2013 at 4:04 pm

  11. As always, exceptional work. There’s a ham in my family’s near future (over the holidays) and I think I’ll come back to re-read this prior to preparing it for our feast. And as far as the black Friday business, I haven’t a clue. Too many people and too much stress for simple men wise enough to enjoy the simpler pleasures in life.

    December 4, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    • Thanks man!

      “And as far as the black Friday business, I haven’t a clue” … well that makes two of us! My bride and I went out on black Friday a couple of years ago, and as we stood in the store at two in the blessed morning, with crazed shoppers bumping into us from all sides, we had ourselves a moment of clarity, and came to the conclusion that it sucked. The stores must love it tho.

      Thanks Duncan!

      December 5, 2013 at 9:18 am

  12. oh yeah, i’m gonna be making this one in the summer!

    December 18, 2013 at 12:52 am

  13. Just the ticket for a Sunday gathering and since I have never put a ham on the grill I have, of course, stupid questions galore. I assume that since you mention basting that the ham is in a pan/I’m inclined to sit it on a rack, yay or nay? Over direct or indirect heat?

    July 26, 2017 at 5:48 am

    • Good question! What you’ll want to do is put that over ham indirect for sure. The ham is already cook, remember, so all we need to do is heat up gently. Indirect is always the way to do that.

      As for a pan, I’ve done it both ways, and it all seems to taste good. I kind of like a pan with a rack built into it, for two reasons: One to capture the juices for basting, and lastly, because the rack suspends the ham up over it’s juices so that the smoke from your indirect fire can get to it. It works really well.

      Feel free to email us with any questions, and we’ll do our best!

      July 26, 2017 at 9:03 am

      • I’ll be lighting up the Primo grill and since I have all of the accessories for the grill I’ll use a deflector rack to hold the drip pan and an extension rack to hold the ham. I’m excited about grilling ham and today one of our stores has a smoked picnic ham on sale, but I’m also going to get a nice spiral cut ham as well, gotta get ’em when they are on sale!

        July 26, 2017 at 9:34 am

      • Man! I envy your day! Have fun!

        July 26, 2017 at 9:56 am

  14. Will do…any day grilling is a good day!

    July 26, 2017 at 10:13 am

  15. Well, heck not one spiral sliced in the case where the smoked picnic ham has a bone, but not sliced! Ripping hair out and settled on a nice rack of ribs for the grill tonight. DH brought home one of each of those hams though. Suggestions? Oh, and I was reading another article about removing the skin and a good amount of fat from the ham..

    July 26, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    • I meant to say that the spiral sliced ham does not have a bone

      July 26, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    • Hey, any day you have to settle for a rack of ribs ain’t all that bad of a day!

      I personally prefer hams with bones in it. Any meat for that matter. I firmly believe it imparts more flavor into the meat. Same with fat. I tend to leave fat on the meat as well, for when it renders, it adds so much flavor and moisture. Fat is where it’s at! At the end of the day tho its pretty hard to screw up a ham on the grill. I would caution taking it any hotter than, say 145 ish is all. Any higher and some hams tend to dry out a tad.

      July 26, 2017 at 3:49 pm

  16. Thanks, guy and I will report back after Sunday! Congrats on the sweet girl and enjoy. Time passes so quickly, My sweet girl is now 43 and still a wonderful mom and shining star to our Nation’s Homeland Security Team! She loves ham, hence my effort to get it done for her visit to the coast this week!

    July 26, 2017 at 6:52 pm

    • Thank you ! We are loving it that little girl. And might I say, what a surprising and delightful time it’s been today bantering food talk with you.

      Blessings to you and your family!

      July 26, 2017 at 8:00 pm

      • Well, still menu planning for the week…DH and I finished off a rack of ribs, or close to it…I’ll get the ham done by God. Happy rest of the week and happy grilling this weekend!

        July 26, 2017 at 8:08 pm

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