Ham With a Crispy Bread Crust: a Traditional Swiss Potluck Favourite

Updated on December 29, 2017

The perfect dish for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter etc.

You will not be disappointed with this traditional recipe that used to be a popular party dish in Switzerland and Germany. Although potluck dinners are virtually unknown in these regions, “Schinken im Brotteig” (ham baked in bread) was the ideal meal for a large crowd as it could easily be prepared in advance. For larger gatherings, two or three hams would be baked and served with a variety of salads, including potato salad.

Recipe:

(serves 6-8 people)

  • 1 smoked rolled ham (Toupie ham or Alsacian ham), approx. 1 kg
  • Note: If ham is already cooked leave it in the fridge until you are ready to bake it. If ham is uncooked, cook it according to package instructions (for approx. 60 minutes per kg) in a broth of the following:
  • A pot of water, 3 bay leaves, a few pepper corns, 1 large onion cut into rings.

If you don’t have time to make the bread dough, you can substitute with 2 packets of store-bought pizza dough.

Bread dough:

  • 400 grams (2 1/3 cup) unbleached all purpose flour
  • 100 grams (2/3 cup) whole wheat flour
  • 7 grams (2 teaspoons) quick rising yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 150 ml beer, room temperature (if you don't like beer just add extra water)
  • 200 ml water, warm
  1. Mix all ingredients in your bread maker (dough function), or knead vigorously by hand (approx. 10 minutes).
  2. Cover bowl with a damp cloth and let dough rise at room temperature for approx. 1 hour.
  3. Knead dough again briefly to get some of the air out. If it feels wet, sprinkle with some flour.
  4. Roll out with a rolling pin until dough is rectangular and large enough to wrap up the ham.
  5. Pack ham firmly into the dough and brush edges with some water to make them stick. Make sure that the seam is at the bottom, so that it won’t burst during the baking process. If you have some leftover dough, get creative. Cut out some nice shapes with a cookie cutter and glue on with some water.
  6. Place ham on baking tray and bake for approx. 1 hour until nicely browned and crispy. Normal oven: 180 ° C / 360 ° F. Convection oven: 160 ° / 320 ° F.
  7. Take bread out the oven, and let it cool down a bit until it can be handled without gloves.
  8. With a sharp knife, cut a lid off through the middle. Now you can carve the ham.
  9. Put the lid back on the meat to keep it warm.
  10. Before serving, cut the lid into neat slices so that your guests can help themselves to ham and bread. The bread will be a little bit soggy from the meat juice but this makes it very tasty.
  11. Serve with mustard, salad and pickles.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Wrap ham in rolled-out doughPlace wrapped ham seams down on cookie sheet and use leftover dough for decoration.With a sharp knife cut off a lid. Carve ham and close lid immediately to keep ham warm until served.
Wrap ham in rolled-out dough
Wrap ham in rolled-out dough
Place wrapped ham seams down on cookie sheet and use leftover dough for decoration.
Place wrapped ham seams down on cookie sheet and use leftover dough for decoration.
With a sharp knife cut off a lid. Carve ham and close lid immediately to keep ham warm until served.
With a sharp knife cut off a lid. Carve ham and close lid immediately to keep ham warm until served.

Questions & Answers

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      • VVanNess profile image

        Victoria Van Ness 

        4 years ago from Fountain, CO

        Very cool! I don't think I've ever seen this done before. I think my husband would love this!

      • novascotiamiss profile imageAUTHOR

        Novascotiamiss 

        4 years ago from Nova Scotia, Canada

        Jellygator & Chef-de-Jour. Happy cooking. This recipe is a winner, especially with kids around. The bread can get a bit soggy as it gets saturated with the hams juices. If you have leftovers, just re-heat the bread in the oven for 5-10 minutes the next day.

      • chef-de-jour profile image

        Andrew Spacey 

        4 years ago from Near Huddersfield, West Yorkshire,UK

        What a fascinating idea! Ham cooked within bread. Useful recipe to have if you want to impress your guests and family. Voted up and sharing too.

      • jellygator profile image

        jellygator 

        4 years ago from USA

        Voted well and keeping on my Pinterest recipe board. Thanks!

      • novascotiamiss profile imageAUTHOR

        Novascotiamiss 

        4 years ago from Nova Scotia, Canada

        CraftytotheCore & Susan, thanks for your comments. I hope you'll enjoy this recipe as much as my Swiss family does. We just cooked it for my father's 95th birthday in December as it's his favourite. It's now also become the favourite of his 6 grand-children and 3 great-grandchildren.

      • Just Ask Susan profile image

        Susan Zutautas 

        4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

        I may try your recipe for Easter dinner this year. How interesting! Voting +++ Pinning and sharing.

      • CraftytotheCore profile image

        CraftytotheCore 

        4 years ago

        This looks fantastic. I'm gluten free, but I make gluten-free bread. I can totally see myself wrapping a ham in my bread the next time I make it! Thanks for this delicious recipe.

      • Pamela99 profile image

        Pamela Oglesby 

        7 years ago from Sunny Florida

        I've never seen ham cooked that way and it looks wonderful. Thank you for the recipe.

      • lilibees profile image

        lilibees 

        7 years ago

        ooooo, wow this looks devine, Thanks for sharing!

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