Jerk gammon

1 hour 30 minutes



  • 4kg smoked gammon joint
  • 1 handful of black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 celery stick, cut into 4
  • 1 carrot, cut into rough chunks

Jerk marinade

  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 5 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 knob of fresh ginger, large, peeled
  • Scotch Bonnet chillies, 6-8 depending on heat tolerance
  • 2 tbsp of allspice berries, ground in a pestle and mortar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 handful of thyme sprigs, leaves picked
  • 65g of dark muscovado sugar
  • 3 limes, juiced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • black pepper
  • 1 tbsp of rum


Place the gammon in a large saucepan, cover it with cold water and bring to the boil. Discard the water and repeat, adding the stock vegetables. Turn the heat down low and leave to simmer under a cartouche of parchment for about 4 hours
Leave to cool in the pan before lifting the gammon out of the stock (keep the stock for something else. It freezes very well) and cutting off the skin and excess fat, leaving just a very thin layer of fat over the meat
Make the marinade by tossing everything into a food processor and blitzing until you have a smooth paste. Score the fat on the gammon and, using latex gloves (or those scotch bonnets will leave your fingers tingling for hours. And not in a good way.), rub the meat with the jerk seasoning
Place the gammon in a dish, pouring over any excess marinade, cover with cling film and leave to marinate for at least 8 hours (24 is best)
Preheat the oven to 180˚C/gas mark 4
Spoon over the marinade that has collected in the dish and pop the meat in oven for 45 minutes, basting every now and then. Increase the temperature to 200˚C/gas mark 6
Spread the thickened marinade over the gammon and place back in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until a nice sticky crust has formed on top of the gammon
Alternatively you can chuck it on the barbecue to finish it off if you like. This is delicious served hot with coleslaw and corn on the cob and the leftovers make for an exciting packed lunch