How to


Cooked Ham

General Information about Cooked Hams
Basics in Cooked Ham Production
Additives for Cooked Hams
Different Raps Products for Cooked Hams
Typical failures in Cooked Ham Production

General Information:


Cooked Hams or Roasts are cured meat products from pork,
beef, chicken or turkey meat, which are always cooked.
(sometimes smoked)There are a lot of different Cooked Ham
Variations available, which vary in

premium (0-30 % brine addition)
medium, (35-60% brine addition)
budget product (65-150% brine addition; restructured)

2. Way of production process
Injected Ham (whole meat pieces are injected)
Restructured or reformed ham (small muscle pieces
and trimmings are mixed with brine inside the tumbler
without injection.

Basics in Cooked Ham Production
Raw Material:

1.Meat should be 3 days old
2.Ph-value should be between 5.8 and 6.1
3.No PSE-Meat (pale-soft-exudative pH between 5.4-5.7)
4.No DFD-Meat (dark, firm, dry; pH between 6,2-6,5)
5.Temperature under 4°C

Raw Material:
Ph of meat after slaughtering

-Lower water retention
-Lower yield
-Dry and stramineous structure
-Lower slicability

Meat Preparation (Cutting)
-Use leg, shoulder or loin meat from pork
-Use Chicken- or Turkey Breast(or thigh)
-Remove all fat, sinews and skin -Remove all lymph nodes, bones and gristle
-Use a tenderizer to increase the surface after injection
Brine Preparation and Injection
-Always prepare fresh brine(don't store it, because of hygienic problems and nitrite degratation)
-First dissolve the compound then the Nitritcuringsalt
-Temperature of brine should be around 0°C (32°F)
-Meat temperature should be between -2°C and 2°C
-Injection pressure depends on the injection machine and the injection level (should be between 1 and 4 bar)
-Salt content in the final product must be at least 1.6 % (16 g/kg), (=Minimum level for taste and technology)

-The tumbler is a drum, that rotates slowly, about 8-12 rpm. -The aim of tumbling is to get a better protein exploration and therefore better juiceness, tenderness and slicability. -Temperature should be between 0 and 2°C
-Best tumbling is vacuum tumbling (to avoide foam in the product)
-Intervall tumbling is recommended (i.e. 10 min work 20 min rest; depends on the product and the facilities) if possible.
-When using fast tumbling without rest, product should rest overnight.

Important factors for Tumbling:

1.Diameter of the tumbler
2.Revolutions per minute
3.Number and size of the drivers inside
4.Adjustment of the drivers (spiral or straight)
5.Filling capacity of the tumbler
6.Injection level (25 %up to 100%)
7.Continous or Intervall tumbling
8.Time for tumbling
9.Size of the meat parts

Stuffing and Cooking
1.Always use a vacuum stuffer to avoid local separation and air bubbles inside the product. If you stuff by hand you should avoid holes between the meat parts.
2. Cook at 76-78°C until you reach a core temperature
of 70°C-72°C
3. Never press the lid directly after cooking if you use ham
4. Before slicing or opening the ham moulds
the product should be chilled to 4°C or less.

Additives for Cooked Hams

There are many Additives available and it depends on the quality of hams, to determine which ones are necessary.

-Salt and Nitrite (minimum 16g/kg final product)
-Sugars, Spices, Colourings and Preservatives
-Phosphates (water soluble)
-Animal or vegetable proteins
-Hydrokolloids (Carrageenan, Xanthan)

Raps Products for Cooked Hams
-Products for yields between 0 and 150% extension
-Products for Premium-, Standard- and Budget Cooked Hams
-Products for Pork-, Chicken-, Turkey- and Beef
-Products with different functional ingredients depending on the final product
-Products for different Aroma, flavour and taste
-Products to improve the colour and the shelf-life of the final product

Ask our sales people for more information