Cut the HAM into very thin slices, (the thinner the better.) Soak them in hot water at least half an hour, (a whole hour is better,) to draw out some of the salt; changing the water several times, and always pouring it on scalding hot. This process will not only extract the superfluous salt (which would otherwise ooze out in broiling and remain sticking about the surface of the meat) but it makes the HAM more tender and mellow. After soaking, dry the slices in a cloth, and then heat your gridiron, and broil them over a clear fire.
If you have cold boiled HAM, it is better for broiling than that which is raw; and being boiled, will require no soaking before you put it on the gridiron.
If you wish to serve up eggs with the HAM, put some lard into a very clean frying-pan, and make it boiling hot. Break the eggs separately into a Saucer, that in case a bad one should be among them it may not mix with the rest. Slip each egg gently into the frying-pan. Do not turn them while they are frying, but keep pouring some of the hot lard over them with an iron spoon; this will do them sufficiently on the upper side. They will be done enough in about three minutes; the white must retain its transparency so that the yolk will be seen through it. When done, take them up with a tin slice, drain off the lard, and if any part of the white is discoloured or ragged, trim it off. Lay a fried egg upon each slice of the broiled HAM, and send them to table hot.
This is a much nicer way than the common practice of frying the HAM or bacon with the eggs. Some persons broil or fry the HAM without eggs, and send it to table cut into little slips or mouthfuls.
To curl small pieces of HAM for garnishing, slice as thin as possible some that has been boiled or parboiled. The pieces should be about two inches square. Roll it up round little wooden skewers, and put it into a cheese toaster, or into a tin oven, and set it before the fire for eight or ten minutes. When it is done, slip out the skewers.
Directions for Cookery, In Its Various Branches.
Ladies and Professional Cooks.
The Whole Science and Art of Preparing Human Food. (Year 1840)