Monday, April 13, 2009

Ham in a Spam Can

It doesn't matter what I blog today, because computer spam filters will toss this out because of the title.

Why is ham a traditional Easter dinner? Ham is pork and our traditions are Judeo-Christian. Pork is forbidden to Jews. I know a better cook might serve leg of lamb for Easter. My sister probably does, but most of us have a ham dinner. Whether that is because they are the supermarket special this time of year or our mothers cooked ham, I'm not sure.

My mom served ham at Easter. That 50's ham was boneless and came in an eliptically shapped can. There was a key stuck to the can that you connected to an end of a metal strip to open the can like Spam cans used to open. Mom them made criss-crossed cuts on top and inserted whole cloves so it looked like a giant Tic-Tac-Toe board. Glazed with pineapple, it was a simpler way to serve ham than the bone-in smoked ham. Easier to carve. You don't see these in the store anymore. Boneless hams are shrink wrapped in plastic.

This is one of the only years I didn't dye eggs. We had a double smoked ham, but no green eggs.

In the year 33 AD (that's AD and NOT CE) Jesus and the disciples ate lamb at Passover. The next meal after the Resurrection, we see Jesus cooking lunch for the disciples. He cooked fish. Fish over the fire. Shore lunch. Like a Minnesota fisherman. Why don't we eat fish for Easter? It is more symbolic of Christians than pig meat. Maybe it is good we don't eat fish for Easter. I might have grown up eating sardines for Easter.

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