It is funny how you will remember, a food memory, from many years gone by. In thinking to myself how I might “market” the December 2010 Culinary Smackdown, without pestering every blogger I know into smithereens, I remembered a sauce my Mom use to make to serve with ham, because it had raisins. I also remember that most of it would be eaten at dinnertime, and only a spoonful was leftover. I usually ate that last little bit, so I could wash the dish.
Turkey was for Thanksgiving, always. I remember having turkey at Christmas, but I believe that only happened a couple times. Once we had goose, stuffed with apples, prunes and onion quarters. Usually though roast beef was Christmas dinner, roast beef and Yorkshire pudding. As much as I love Thanksgiving, two holiday turkey dinners in a row is too much turkey. I have been making a roast beef dinner for years now, and this year we will be having beef and ham. Ham because my new employer generously gives a turkey at Thanksgiving and a ham at Christmas. And we all know, ham needs Pineapple Raisin Sauce!
When I first started worrying that no one would submit an entry for the Smackdown, I remembered that pineapple raisin sauce. I remembered it because of the raisins, not because I can also be an excessive worrier! Like many of the foods cooked and served, Mom did not use a recipe for the sauce. I remember the sauce so vividly; I think I can recreate it in my own kitchen. I know it started with a can of crushed pineapple, including the juice. Then a big handful of raisins, some brown sugar, a bit of cider vinegar.
The raisins were tender, not chewy. I also remembered that part. Oh and I remember a dash of cloves. I can see the little red and white tin in her hand, then a quick downward shake to get that “dash” to come out of the can. With exception to the raisins, I imagine that the order per say, does not matter.
A quick google for pineapple raisin sauce for ham produces 60,700 results. I was surprised at that number. It appears that a lot of folks eat pineapple raisin sauce with their ham.
(my mom) Mary’s Pineapple Raisin Sauce for Ham
1 c raisins
1 c water
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple – do not drain
1 T cider vinegar
1/3 – 1/2 c brown sugar ( if you like a sweeter sauce, use the full measure)
1/4 c water
1 - 2 T corn starch ( I remember Mom’s sauce would stay on your ham!)
Place raisins and water in a medium size saucepan, cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes.
Add the pineapple, vinegar, brown sugar and cloves, return to a simmer. Let simmer while making the slurry.
Combine the cornstarch and water, stirring until smooth. Pour into the simmering fruit in a thin stream, stirring continuously. Cook, until mixture is thickened and transparent. Serve with ham.
As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop and say hello!
Remember to stop by and submit your entry for the December 2010 Culinary Smackdown! There that was not too bad, I still see smithereens way far out there on the horizon! Oh the theme is RAISINS.
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