Our next stop on the 50 states, 50 recipes tour is;
State capital: Richmond
Largest City: Virginia Beach
Admission to the Union: June 25th 1788, 10th state to join the Union
Agriculture occupies 24% of the land in Virginia. As of 2007, about 357,000 Virginian jobs were in agriculture, with over 47,000 farms, averaging 171 acres (0.27 sq mi; 0.69 km2), in a total farmland area of 8.1 million acres (12,656 sq mi; 32,780 km2). Though agriculture has declined significantly since 1960 when there were twice as many farms, it remains the largest single industry in Virginia. Tomatoes surpassed soy as the most profitable crop in Virginia in 2006, with peanuts and hay as other agricultural products. Although it is no longer the primary crop, Virginia is still the fifth-largest producer of tobacco nationwide. Eastern oyster harvests are an important part of the Chesapeake Bay economy, but declining oyster populations from disease, pollution, and overfishing have diminished catches. Wineries and vineyards in the Northern Neck and along the Blue Ridge Mountains also have begun to generate income and attract tourists. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia )
Here are some great sites about tourism in Virginia;
I love Virginia… after all it’s the State for Lovers. There is something so patriotic and laid back about Virginia. You can visit civil war battle fields, old colonial homesteads and modern military bases within a couple of hours of each other. There is literally something for everyone to do in Virginia and I love it there! It’s considered a Southern state with that traditional Southern hospitality that comes through in everything they serve, but at the same time being so close to Washington DC it has a sophistication to it that appeals to the more discerning travelers as well. Go visit… you won’t be disappointed!
When I think of Virginia, I think of a traditional Virginia ham, something so sweet and moist it melts in your mouth. I wish I could say that this recipe comes from a website that I could send ya all to… but it’s a ham recipe that I use pretty much weekly. Almost every Sunday we cook up a ham and use the leftovers for omelets, ham egg and hash browns, or lunches. This can be done in the oven but I’ve done it for so long in the crock pot that I’ve honestly forgotten how to do it in the oven! Lord knows getting older isn’t for sissies, and I really need to start writing down some of these old recipes.
Granny Martha’s Crock Pot Ham
Ham with bone, or spiral sliced large enough to fit in crock pot
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup water
Remove all plastic from ham and wash ham thoroughly. Dry ham and wrap in aluminum foil leaving top open. Score ham with knife and place in crock pot. Pour cup of water around ham, directly into crock pot. Turn crock pot on High- depending on size of ham, can turn down to Low if leaving for longer than 6 hours. Mix brown sugar and orange juice to make thick paste, add more brown sugar if too runny, more orange juice if too thick. Pour half of the mixture over the ham in the crock pot- reserve half for glaze/gravy. Place lid on crock pot and let ham cook for no less than 4 hours, no less than 6 depending on size of ham. Follow cooking directions on package and adjust accordingly.
Before serving, remove ham from crock pot and cut off of bone or cut along slices. To make glaze take half brown sugar/orange juice mixture and bring to rapid boil on stove top. After ham has cooked, pour glaze over ham before serving.
I make this ham so often, I can’t even be sure the measurements are accurate. This is one of those recipes that has been handed down from generation to generation and becomes your own through trial and error. Make this recipe a few times and adjust the measurements to suit your tastes.
Ham can be expensive. But because we have a large family (when we’re all together) we rarely have an issue with it being too much. When everyone isn’t home, we use the leftovers for several meals during the week which makes it much more cost effective. Ham is very versatile.
LITERALLY- make and leave it alone. This is so low key, non-fussy, and easy… I sometimes forget I’m making it. Ya’ll will love this if you love a sweet ham. The only thing you’ll have to figure out for yourselves is cooking time. But because you can leave it in the crock pot all day on low if you need to… nothing to worry over!
Review: scale of 1-5 stars; the more stars the better
Ease of preparation: ***** very easy, so easy I make it nearly every Sunday for dinner
Cost of ingredients: *** can be expensive depending on size of ham, but with enough to use for leftovers can be cost effective by making 2-3 meals out of it
Taste: ***** this is so sweet and so versatile in other recipes that it’s a Martha household staple
Nutrition: *** a bone in ham has a lot of fat, but ham is still a good for you meat.
We eat this so often that when I make it for company around the holidays, I’m always surprised by how many people like it. It’s so sweet that kids who normally won’t touch ham, love this version. We have this with mashed potatoes, biscuits, some green beans and cold sweet tea and call it Sunday supper! I hope ya’ll will enjoy it as much as we do ‘round here! So until next week when we head to West Virginia may all your journeys be safe and your eats be good!