Flavor, NC: Goodnight Brothers County Ham, Boone

by | Sep 18, 2014

Flavor NCTwice a month we feature local restaurants, farms and farmers markets featured on episodes of UNC-TV’s Flavor, NC. This week, we review episode three of the first season in which hostess Lisa Prince highlights Goodnight Brothers County Ham and The Gamekeeper Restaurant in Boone.

“Think country ham only comes on a biscuit?” asks Lisa. “Well get ready to think again if you are talking about all-natural country ham from the heart of the Blue Ridge mountains.”  Ham is the hind leg of a hog and country ham is the salted and seasoned version. Goodnight Brothers County Ham hasn’t significantly altered the way they season their country ham since opening in 1948.  In the video below,  they show it is still all about ingredients, aging and climate.

 

After learning a little about the curing process, Lisa visits with the chef and owner of Gamekeeper Restaurant, Ken Gorden. He provides the recipe below for Seared country-ham-wrapped asparagus.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound asparagus
  • 6 slices Goodnight Brothers thin-sliced country ham
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • Freshly cracked pepper

Preparation:
Trim away the fibrous base of the asparagus then blanch in seasoned boiling water for a couple of minutes until cooked but still crisp. Shock in an ice bath to cool. Wrap asparagus with ham in groups of two to five, depending on size of asparagus. Sear in hot pan or on griddle with a splash of olive oil until ham is lightly bronzed on all sides. Place on serving dish. Serve hot or room temperature with a light drizzle of balsamic reduction, crumbled goat cheese, roasted tomato slices and cracked pepper.

To make balsamic reduction, simply cook ½ cup of balsamic vinegar in a small pan until reduced by at least half. Test by drizzling a few drops of reduction on a room temperature plate, waiting a few seconds for it to cool, then test consistency with your finger.
Watch Flavor, NC on WUNC TV. Season four premiers Thursday, Oct. 2 at 10:30 p.m.