Tuesday, March 5, 2013

ham and pineapple kabobs

Kabobs are easy to assemble and simple to cook, but I really dislike regular meat and vegetable kabobs. Don't get me wrong, I think they're delicious, but it's hard to get the right balance between not over cooking the meat and not under cooking the vegetables. These kabobs are much simpler to gauge because both parts are already cooked. I mean, the ham is already cooked and the pineapple doesn't need to be fully cooked.
You can use spiral ham for this recipe, but I chose to use a 1 lb smoked ham steak. Whatever ham you choose, just make sure that it's not to thin so it doesn't burn on the grill. I would also be sure to choose a ham that's fully cooked. One key ingredient to this recipe is the pineapple and you CANNOT use fresh pineapple. Pineapple contains and enzyme known as bromelain that acts as a natural meat tenderizer that is great for teriyaki, but not for smoked ham. If you want to break down a pineapple and use it, either microwave it for 30 seconds or cook it in the oven for 5 minutes or so to break down those enzymes. I just chose to use pineapple packed in it's own juices. You'll want to marinate the ham and pineapple for as long as possible- I did it for an hour but you can go for longer. Don't go more than 3 hours, however, because the salt in the soy sauce will start to suck the moisture out of the ham.
The only way you're going to get that yummy crustification is if you cook these on the grill, but you probably could cook them in the oven if you really needed to. I always brush the outside of the kabobs with reserved marinade. Serve them hot, and that's about all there is to it!
Ham and Pineapple Kabobs
1 1/2 lb ham steak
8 oz. can pineapple in juice, reserve juice
2 Tablespoon soy sauce
2 Tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 tsp garlic powder

Alternately place ham and pineapple onto skewers. Place skewers into a baking pan. Mix together reserved juice, soy sauce, brown sugar and garlic, then pour over skewers in the pan reserving a 1/4 cup for basting later. Cover and marinate for 1-3 hours. Grill over medium heat for 2-3 minutes on each side for a total of 10 minutes. Baste with reserved sauce. Serve warm and enjoy!