When preparing to cook a ham, scrape, wash and trim it carefully. Place ham in a large cook pot or boiler, partly cover with cold water, let come to a boil, then move back on range where the water will merely simmer, just bubble gently around the edge of the boiler.
A medium sized ham should be tender in five or six hours. When a fork stuck into the ham comes out readily, the ham is cooked. Take from the boiler and skin carefully, removing all the discolored portions of the smoked end, stick 2 dozen whole cloves into the thick fat, and sprinkle a couple tablespoonfuls of brown sugar and fine bread crumbs over top.
Place in a very hot oven a short time, until the fat turns a golden brown. Watch carefully to see that it does not scorch.
When cold, slice thin and serve.
When about to fry a slice of uncooked ham, do young housewives know how very much it improves the flavor of the ham if it is allowed to stand for ten or fifteen minutes in a platter containing a large teaspoonful of sugar and a little cold water? Turn several times, then wipe quite dry with a clean cloth and fry in a pan containing a little hot drippings and a very little butter (one-half teaspoonful) just enough to prevent its sticking to the pan.
Do not fry as quickly as beefsteak.
After a slice of ham has been cut from a whole ham, if lard be spread over the end of ham from which the slice has been cut, it will prevent the cut place from becoming mouldy.