Family Holiday Dinner

The Menu:

Glazed Ham with Grilled Pineapple

Smoked Leg of Lamb and Racks of Lamb

Boiled Shrimp

Deviled Eggs

Green Beans with Black Pepper Bacon

Grilled Asparagus

Corn on the Cob

Almost Southern Potato Salad

Strawberry Shortcake

Ham: The General purchased a spiral sliced ham that came with a package of glaze mix. A last minute decision was made to smoke the ham on the smoker. Now this has both pros and cons. Pros: This is a great way to heat up your ham. Con: Since you have so many ends from the spiral slicing that they may get dry from the heat. The ham only stayed on the smoker for only about two hours, so I was safe. This is evidenced by this picture….a thing of beauty decorated with the grilled pineapple…and it sold well!


Shrimp: I boiled the shrimp using Old Bay Seasoning and just served cocktail sauce on the side. The trick to doing the shrimp is to put the shrimp into already boiling water. The temperature of the shrimp will cool the water back down from a boil. Allow the shrimp to come back to a boil and do not cook over 2 minutes after it reaches a boil. Immediately take the shrimp out of the hot water, otherwise it will keep on cooking. Cool under cold water and they are ready to serve.

Lamb: I did something differently than I normally do and that is to brine it by using 1 quart of water and 1 cup Kosher salt. The lamb stayed in the brine for 24 hours. What this does is it draws the blood from the meat and gives it a less “gamey” taste. As evidenced by some guests who said they normally do not like lamb…but they loved this. I put the lamb which was covered with minced garlic on the smoker and cooked it using indirect heat until it reached an internal temperature of 135*.


The missus and I have two aging (10+) German Shepherd dogs. Mars is suffering from degenerative myelopathy (kind of like Lou Gerhig’s disease in humans.) Radar is just big! Both live to eat. I guess living in this house one would expect that as we do give them some tasty treats after dinner. Yesterday, Radar fell asleep at my feet while I was eating dinner, and when I placed a huge chunk of lamb under his nose he didn’t wake up. TLW got this picture. I guess Radar was having a really good dream!


Pineapple: Since I was using indirect heat for the lamb and the ham, that gave me grill space to grill the pineapple. I took a whole pineapple and using a sharp knife I cut the prickly outer skin off. Generally, the pineapple will then need a little bit of cleaning “up.” Next, I cut it into slices approximately 1/2 inch thick. The slices were grilled over direct heat and turned every 3 to 4 minutes. The trick here is that you are really not cooking the pineapple, just warming it up and getting the grill marks. The slices do not need to be served warm, so you can take them up in advance. It makes for a great and tasty presentation!

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