Glad we're not the only ones noticing that country hams are underrated
. On Hungry Beast, author Mark Scarborough's look at "Easter's Top Five Hams"
is particularly obsessed with the hams of Nancy Newsom
, calling them "deeply flavored, complex, ridiculously umami with quiet hints of floral overtones. She still cures, smokes, and ages them the way her grandfather did: in a gnarly old barn out behind her mother’s house. If they’re a labor of love for her, they are for you, too. You’ve got to soak them in water for days to get the salt out of the meat, and then roast them for hours."
Scarborough goes on to extoll the pleasures of raising one's own meat as well: "You haven’t lived until you’ve driven your dinner to slaughter, watched it buck in the truck, and seen it go down the ramp into the killing pen. Don’t get all Michael Pollan on me. We weren’t headed to an abattoir. It was some guy’s backyard in rural New England. There were upholstered chairs on a porch. Soon, there would be blood."