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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: ham, spread

The Devil's Ham

ACTIVE TIME: 20 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 2 hours 20 minutes
Yield: 2 cups
The Underwood company of Boston started selling preserved foods in 1822 and in 1868 changed the world with a spiced, spreadable product called Deviled Ham. The can, which was wrapped in printed paper when I was a kid, had always featured a pictural representation of, well...Satan. In fact, whenever my parents took me to church as a child, I understood it was to save me from the little red guy with the horns and the fork on the can of Deviled Ham.
I digress. Point is, I loved the stuff. And yet, when nostalgia fueled a recent purchase, I found the contents of the can...lacking. So, we made our own.
Ahhhh, the taste of childhood.
Photo by Lynne Calamia
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  • 1 pound smoked ham, cut in 1-inch cubes
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon malt vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • crackers for serving

Specialized Hardware

Food processor
ACTIVE TIME: 20 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 2 hours 20 minutes
Yield: 2 cups


  • Place the ham and butter in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the standard blade and take for 5 one-second spins. Scrape down the sides of the bowl then pulse 3 more times for about a second per pulse.
  • Whisk the remaining ingredients in a medium bowl then add the ham mixture. Fold together with a rubber spatula until creamy and well incorporated.
  • Move to a lidded container and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, even better overnight.
  • Serve spread into a sandwich with a bit of mayo and mustard, stuff it into hollowed tomatoes, or just dig in with your favorite crackers. Warning though, modern Ritz crackers will just snap off and break your heart.
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