Boiled Gammon and Parsley Sauce

6 Feb

Some dishes, to me, are so typically English and bring back memories of food from my past.  Gammon is cured (usually wet cured in a salt brine) pork, from the leg.  It can be bought smoked, as an entire joint or as steaks.  It just can´t be bought in Spain, so I will have to work on a way to make my own.

Meanwhile, I picked up a few small joints of gammon on a pre Christmas shopping trip to the strange place that is Gibraltar.  A couple of hours´ drive from Malaga, it is a British Overseas Territory on the southern Iberian Peninsula.  I have to confess it´s not my favourite place as it seems to contain all that is bad about Britain packed into a very small area…but I don´t wish to offend and I am sure there is much more to it than I have ever seen on two brief shopping trips.

A trip to Gib, as it´s known to the Brits, allows us ex pats to stock up on things (particularly food) that we miss and either can´t get hold of or can´t be transported over easily by our visitors.  So, amongst many other food goodies, gammon it was.  I thought that Big Man would enjoy it as he loves pork and ham, but I knew it would be a new and interesting taste for him.

Gammon can be roasted or boiled and served hot or cold.  I decided to do a hot dish, boiled gammon with parsley sauce, which is a typical dish of comfort food from my homeland.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • One small brined gammon (about 750g)
  • About 6 carrots peeled and chopped into large pieces
  • 2 medium onions peeled and halved
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cloves
  • Water to cover
  • 6-8 medium potatoes boiled in their skins and peeled and halved to serve

For the parsely sauce you will need half a litre of home made béchamel sauce (infuse the parsley stalks in your milk before making it) and two tablespoons of parsley stirred in at the end. For extra flavour, use half milk and half stock (from boiling your gammon).

Simply put the gammon, onion, carrots, bay leaves and cloves into a deep saucepan and cover with water.  Don´t use salt – it will be fairly salty from the brine. Bring to the boil, skim off any scum that rises to the surface, cover and simmer gently for about an hour until the gammon is tender.

When the gammon is cooked, leave it to sit in the hot stock while you cook your potatoes and make the parsley sauce.  I used one cup each of milk and stock (which should both be cooled) , 2 tablespoons of plain flour, 1 tablespoon of oil and whisked everything together over a low heat until it started to boil and thicken.  This is my cheat´s way of making white sauce.  Finally I stirred in my chopped parsley and let it sit for a few minutes.

Remove the gammon from the stock and slice or chop (it will not slice easily when it´s warm, but I don´t mind chunks!).  I put some runner beans into the stock with the carrots and onions, bought them up to the boil and then strained the vegetables, reserving the stock for soup. Serve with the boiled, peeled potatoes and vegetables and enjoy the lovely steamy smells of gammon and parsley that will float up and fill you with a sense of comfort.


60 Responses to “Boiled Gammon and Parsley Sauce”

  1. cookinginsens February 6, 2012 at 13:25 #

    Everything looks so good; veg, gammon and sauce!

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 14:01 #

      Thank you – it was nice to eat something “different” (for here at least) for a change!

  2. TBM February 6, 2012 at 13:26 #

    The first time I saw Gammon on a menu in London I thought it was a reference to Dr. Seuss’ stories. I’m not sure why, but I had never heard the word before. That said, it didn’t take me long to love it.

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 14:00 #

      Hee hee! Now you know what it is…glad you like it now 🙂

  3. thecompletecookbook February 6, 2012 at 13:40 #

    Such a wonderful comforting meal, which I could enjoy all year around! Must call my mom to ask why she never made us the parsley sauce growing up – feel like I have missed out!
    🙂 Mandy

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 14:00 #

      You had a deprived childhood Mandy…your cruel mother! 😉

  4. gardenfreshtomatoes February 6, 2012 at 14:04 #

    Another new one on me…the parsley sauce sounds wonderful, and I’m a sucker for cured pork of any kind!
    To you suppose Gammon began as a mis-pronounciation of Jamon? (Sorry, no accent mark, but you know what I mean… 😉 )

    • gardenfreshtomatoes February 6, 2012 at 14:04 #

      That should be “DO you suppose…”

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 15:01 #

      Good point about the jamon/gammon thing…it sounds very plausible to me! Gammon is so good and as soon as I´ve worked out how to make my own, I´ll be sharing it with you all 🙂

  5. Rachel February 6, 2012 at 14:15 #

    I don’t know this kind of ham. At least I *guess* it is a sort of ham… looks yummy in any event! Of course, I have yet to meet any part of the pig I didn’t like to eat… 😉 Mmmm!!

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 15:01 #

      You´re right, it is indeed a sort of ham and I´m really hoping I can work out how to make my own.

  6. themateriallady February 6, 2012 at 15:17 #

    I love gammon (and the fact that the stock continues into a fabulous soup base) but I always like pease pudding with mine. My husband thinks that it’s horrible – but I love it hot and cold! Can’t say I remember having it with parsley sauce though. Must try it.

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 15:34 #

      Ooh how lovely with pease pudding! Maybe the parsley sauce was just something we did in my family…

      • DyannT February 7, 2012 at 00:28 #

        A good point, Tanya. My mother always made parsely sauce with boiled ham, corned beef – basically anything salted.


      • Chica Andaluza February 7, 2012 at 10:16 #

        It was funny as when I made the recipe, it didn´t seem unusual to me…I know my grandmother would have taught my mum and then me. Mind you…this could have come from some old family recipe way, way back in the late 1700s!

  7. Just A Smidgen February 6, 2012 at 15:50 #

    I’ve never had gammon, never mind the parsley sauce. I would love this as I love anything brined… and they do the brining for you:) what could be better! I’m sure your husband loved this, such a perfect comfort food:) xo Smidge

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 15:54 #

      It was a huge hit, and luckily I bought two, so (as the weather is colder now) I think we´ll be having this again soon!

  8. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide February 6, 2012 at 16:59 #

    This looks wonderful. Wonder if I can find it here….

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 17:54 #

      Not sure – is brined meat something eaten round your way…I am determined to learn how to make the “raw” product myself!

  9. Mad Dog February 6, 2012 at 17:05 #

    Sounds delicious – I wish my mother had been able to cook like this – I’m sure she was Nigel Slater’s mum’s twin sister.
    There’s a section on curing ham in Jocasta Innes’ The Country Kitchen” 😉

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 17:55 #

      Am still laughing at this – lots of toast then eh?! I knew that if anyone could point me in the right direction about curing the pork, it would be you! Thank you so much…will have to look into this. Reminds me that I might also find something in The River Cottage Yearbook…

  10. ChgoJohn February 6, 2012 at 17:17 #

    This sounds delicious, Tanya, and your parsley sauce is something I’ve got to try. Your photo of the prepared plate is so tantalizing and you served it atop a red checkered table cloth. Perfect!

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 18:19 #

      Thank you! The red checkered tablecloth is a big favourite – it even comes on picnics with us 🙂

  11. Caroline February 6, 2012 at 20:28 #

    Actually never had this cut of meat before, but it sounds and looks delicious! I think I could eat that entire plate right now…

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 21:02 #

      I don´t think you can get it everywhere but it´s super tasty!

  12. spicegirlfla February 6, 2012 at 21:50 #

    So interesting Tanya. I’ve not heard of Gammon before but reading along with your directions, it sounds like it will be so tender and tasty. The parsley sauce also seems to pare with it really nicely. Lovely dinner!

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 22:37 #

      I think the brining (would that be like salt beef?) makes it moist and juicy. And the sauce is yummy!

  13. bitsandbreadcrumbs February 6, 2012 at 21:54 #

    I’m also not sure if I can get Gammon here, but I do like the sound of that yummy parsley sauce (a version I’ve not tried) with ham and veggies…wonderful!

    • Chica Andaluza February 6, 2012 at 22:38 #

      It´s such a simple little sauce, but it tastes so good…and of course it´s easy to make!

  14. DyannT February 7, 2012 at 00:26 #

    Perfect timing for this recipe, Tanya. I visited our local pork shop this morning and came home with all sorts of goodies. They are a boutique butchers shop that cures all its own bacon and ham. (I think they even own the farms where the pigs are raised.)
    Husband, ex-farmer, still requires his bacon and eggs for breakfast on a regular basis.

    • Chica Andaluza February 7, 2012 at 10:14 #

      I´m so pleased Diane and I guess where you are it will be easy to find English cuts and styles of meat. I have been doing some serious research into making my own ham and bacon (either brined or dry cured) so watch this space….!

  15. Michelle February 7, 2012 at 00:52 #

    And here I thought I knew the names of pork products the world over… So glad to learn something new, and your parsley sauce sounds divine.

    • Chica Andaluza February 7, 2012 at 10:16 #

      The English finally have something up their sleeve!

  16. Raymund February 7, 2012 at 09:46 #

    Never tried gammon yet but it sounds so flavourful specially the smoked one

    • Chica Andaluza February 7, 2012 at 11:02 #

      Smoked gammon is probably the best (in my opinion) will have to stock up on my next trip!

  17. Charles February 7, 2012 at 09:59 #

    Hi Chica – it seems boiled gammon isn’t so common these days – I just love it. It’s so succulent and delicious. I was always so happy when they served it at school. Best way of eating it for me was with a fried egg and a pineapple ring, although maybe the pineapple is considered a bit “uncool” these days…?

    Looks like you had a great meal 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza February 7, 2012 at 11:03 #

      Oh yes, I do remember the grilled gammon with the pineapple ring and an egg (or a cherry if you were being posh)!

  18. promenadeplantings February 7, 2012 at 20:32 #

    Great to see a British classic. I was talking to friends about this dish just the other day and we were all craving it! And I like how you recommend using some of the stock for the sauce – de rigeur 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza February 8, 2012 at 11:34 #

      Oh good – I wasn´t sure if this was a bit of a “non recipe” but it seems to have generated quite a bit of interest! At homke we always used some of the stock in the sauce…really gives it a wonderful flavour 🙂

      • promenadeplantings February 8, 2012 at 21:17 #

        Then of course you can always make some pea soup with the left over stock 🙂 Aahhhh happy days !

      • Chica Andaluza February 8, 2012 at 22:34 #

        Ooh – I did, split pea and vegetable with a few chunks of gammon and it was soooo good!

  19. peasepudding February 7, 2012 at 21:24 #

    LOL, as soon as i saw the post name i thought of a British lunch!

  20. Purely.. Kay February 7, 2012 at 22:57 #

    I’ve never heard of this sauce, but it sounds so incredible delicious and amazing. This is such a cool recipe.

    • Chica Andaluza February 8, 2012 at 11:37 #

      Thank you Kay – it´s a great British “staple” often served with ham or bacony types of meat…

  21. Bold Wandering February 8, 2012 at 07:09 #

    Looks like a big plate of comfort food to me. Yum!

    • Chica Andaluza February 8, 2012 at 15:13 #

      Seriously comforting! Thanks for visiting, lovely to welcome new faces 🙂

  22. katyarich February 8, 2012 at 07:21 #

    Gammon is so delicious and also remind me of England….I love it with raspberry jamYUMMMMMY, 🙂

  23. Florence February 8, 2012 at 14:23 #

    Hi T, Looks delicious. A friend brought me a joint out at Christmas. I am saving it for a special occasion!! A bit of shame that you can only buy it in Gib.
    Regards Florence x

    • Chica Andaluza February 8, 2012 at 15:07 #

      As soon as I have worked out how to make it I´ll let you know!

  24. Michi February 9, 2012 at 23:54 #

    Did Big Man end up liking it after all? I’m positive you can make everything taste great!! Big Man’s very lucky to have an amazing chef like you. 🙂

    Spaniards especially seem to be very tied to their typical home dishes (especially Mama’s cooking), and really, who can blame them?! D-Man (el pobresito, heheh) is a good sport and has gulped down plenty of my kitchen experiments over the years. He occasionally happens to walk by and look over my shoulder when I’m browsing through your blog for ideas, and says, “That one. Ooooh, why don’t you try THAT one?? Ven, vamos y compramos un chuletón!”

    • Chica Andaluza February 10, 2012 at 10:07 #

      Big Man did love it and in fact we´re planning another version of this soon. I struggled when I first got here as I wanted to cook as I had cooked in the UK and realised I needed to gradually introduce new foods to Big Man (like to a child!) and now he´ll request things (non Spanish) that I haven´t made for a while. His favourites though are still “platos de cuchara”!

  25. kathryningrid February 15, 2012 at 05:18 #

    A beautiful dish–comfort food indeed–what a lovely thing to share with Big Man!

    • Chica Andaluza February 15, 2012 at 09:39 #

      It was good – in fact, the sort of food we need this week as it´s cold again here!

  26. ....RaeDi February 19, 2012 at 08:42 #

    I have never heard of it, but by your photo… I think I would love it! It looks delicious!


  1. Up the Mountain in the Development Kitchen – Home Cured Pork « Chica Andaluza - March 23, 2012

    […] may recall a while back I showed you a recipe for Boiled Gammon. At the time I talked about the fact that it is impossible to buy it here in Andalucía but that I […]

  2. Just Walking the Pups … and Knocking Down Walls | Chica Andaluza - October 16, 2013

    […] are thin on the ground this week, we’re eating old favourites but when the dust settles, I’ll be back with the food. Now…where’s that […]

I love to hear what you think, please leave me a comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Entre El Comal Y La Olla

Una aventura culinaria


So in 2016 I turned 50. I was in Italy for my 21st, 30th and 40th. To keep this birthday tradition going I always knew I'd be in Italy for my 50! This blog starts with my 5 week adventure in Puglia but my love affair with Italy continues.....


2nd time around

Our Growing Paynes

A journey about cooking, traveling, gardening, and crafting.

the chef mimi blog

So Much Food. So Little Time.


This site is all about gluten free cooking and more.


Trying to find order in all of this chaos

The Complete Book

A little bit of everything


Tales of adventures in quilting, gardening, photography and cooking from the Kingdom of Chiconia

Gather & Graze

In the Melting Pot of an Antipodean Kitchen

Fig Jam and Lime Cordial

Living well in the urban village


Roaming, at home and abroad

East of Málaga

Tales from the AUTHENTIC Costa del Sol .... and beyond

50 Year Project

My challenge to visit 192 countries, read 1,001 books, and watch the top 100 movies

Cooking in Sens

Living, Drinking and Eating in Burgundy


farming, gardens, cows, goats, chickens, food, organic, sustainable, photography,

Chica Andaluza

Sometimes Up a Mountain in Andalucia and sometimes Down by the Sea on the English South Coast

bits and breadcrumbs

where all trails lead to good food

The Material Lady

Fabric, life, and all that

Back Road Journal

Little treasures discovered while exploring the back roads of life

Promenade Plantings

from seed to plate

Mad Dog TV Dinners

Guess what's coming to dinner?

Food, Photography & France

Journal of a food photographer living in France

from the Bartolini kitchens

"Mangia e statti zitto!"


Creating now.

Lavender and Lime

a food and lifestyle blog ♥

Chef in disguise

Easy authentic middle eastern recipes

Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

A how to for everyone and anyone

florence and freddie

the house of chairs

%d bloggers like this: