Pan-fried Ham Steaks

(Adapted from How To Cook Without A Book by Pam Anderson)


Put 1 tbsp. oil and 2 tbsp. butter in a pan that's at least an inch deep (preferable a normal metal pan, NOT non-stick). Turn the heat to medium and melt the butter.

When the butter is melted and the pan is hot, add the ham steaks.

Grab a big pinch of ground cloves and sprinkle all over the ham steaks. I usually use 3 or 4 big pinches. (On only one side.)

Cook the steaks for 2 minutes on a side, flip and cook for 2 more minutes.

After 4 minutes, put the steaks on a warmed plate and cover. DO NOT TURN OFF THE HEAT.

Add the 1/2 cup of apple cider to the still-hot pan (watch for steam and splatter!) and get it bubbling (some say boil, some say simmer). Scrape the bottom of the pan to get the browned bits into the sauce (this is why you should avoid non-stick - no browned bits to flavor the pan sauce).

Reduce (simmer, stirring occasionally) until it's syrupy (Anderson says down to 1/4 cup, I say a bit less - eyeball it based on goopy-ness). Turn off the heat and pour the sauce over the steaks and serve.

We like this with a side of pasta - plain buttered noodles or 1/2 lb. of orzo with some butter, 6 tbsp. of grated parmesan, salt & fresh-ground pepper. The pasta soaks up the extra pan sauce nicely.

Note that Anderson's book has a great chapter on pan sauces - another nice one is a 1/2 cup of Port (wine) with chopped dried cranberries in it. I usually dump the cranberries in before doing anything else so they get the chance to soak up the Port. Her sauces are mix and match with pork chops, turkey, duck, chicken, etc.

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