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Shropshire Black Ham

Meat and Meat Dishes
Wiltshire, Buckinghamshire, Shropshire

(or Bradenham Ham)

Dried Hams for sale in Shrewsbury c1888
Colorized by 'jecinci.com '

A 'black' ham, wet-cured in molasses, coriander, juniper berries. Dried for about 3 months then smoked. The outside skin is distinctively dark, often almost black, and shiny.

Bradenham Ham
Image: Unknown

There is a persistent story that the cure originated in the household of the Lord of the manor of Bradenham in Buckinghamshire in the late 1700's or early 1800's. However, along with the general suspicion about anything in the food line claiming to have aristocratic connections, the Lord of the Manor of Bradenham in the early 19th Century appears to have been Isaac D'Israeli, father to the Victorian prime minister, a noted essayist and leading light of the Jewish Reform movement, who was probably not an enthusiast for pork products.

Bradenham Ham seems to be something of a icon in country-house upper-class-twit literature, getting mentions in 'Luck Of The Bodkins' by PG Wodehouse, the Lord Peter Wimsey books of Dorothy L. Sayers and several of Evelyn Waugh's novels including 'Brideshead Revisited'.

It is also said that a former employee of the Manor established a ham business using the receipt at Chippenham in Wiltshire, from whence it migrated to the Dukeshill company of Telford in Shropshire.
As of 2013 the name 'Bradenham' for hams is owned by Vion Food Group.

Trade Mark 497465, for Ham and Chaps

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