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Monday 7 February 2011

Mustard Spoon (bone)

On the hock end of a ham, you have two bones, one large and a smaller one. The smaller one being referred to as the Mustard Bone or Mustard Spoon.

Years gone past before the invention of meat thermometers, you tested your cooked ham for readiness by pulling at the mustard bone and if this came out relatively easily, then you knew your ham was fully cooked.

The bone would be the shape of a small mustard spoon as we know them today with a small bowl in the opposite end, which happens to be thicker. Here we would use the mustard bone to apply the mustard to our ham.

The same bone by holding it with our thumb in the bowl end and having the narrow end sharpened to a point, we could then use this bone to obtain a sniff test from our air-dried hams to ensure there is no spoilage in the centre. We just simply push in our mustard bone into our ham near to the centre as we can and withdraw the mustard bone and sniff. If there is any spoilage, you will notice it immediately. Ham spoilage attaches itself to bone far more easily than it could to a metal skewer for example.


  1. Marc, you are a veritable font of information! I learn the most interesting things from your blog.

  2. I agree with Jean. Very nice info here as always! That's one gorgeous looking ham!

  3. Hi Jean & Somme, you are both very kind offering me your compliments and yet it is I who feels priviliged being able to tap into your culinary knowledge. I know you Jean that you are not a big carnivore, however your blog offers the quite essentials.

    Somme I can't believe that the US tv media havn't yet picked up on your style. You have to grow into a media talent to be shared for you are unique in your present position, your honesty and bravery are but only two attributes that are interesting to follow. Some of your recipes tell me where you are at in the calender of Salary. You cook according to budget which is true to life. Best of all, you are a great read, if you were articled in a magazine I would have to go and buy it each week.