You like football. You like food. So do we! So much so, in fact, that we smash the two together to bring you a Buffalo Bills-inspired recipe each week. Whether it’s a take on an opponents’ fave or some real mad scientist **** coming your way, Wingin’ It is the spot to watch. This week we’re prepping for the Pittsburgh Steelers!
My wife wanted to try hot ham and cheese on pretzel buns. The store only had pretzel bites. Requests in miniature! The name “hamwiches” comes courtesy of @716babe via Twitter. They go perfect with the half glaze/half wing sauce dip. Like all glazes it skews hard toward the sweet side, but the salt in the ham and on the pretzel ensures balance. Are these tedious to make? No more than a cheese and cracker tray, and these will up your appetizer game.
Tiny *** Hamwiches with Glaze sauce
Makes: about 34 hamwiches and plenty of glaze
Active Time: 30 min
Total Time: 45 min
3 oz pineapple juice (about half a little can)
2⁄3 cup brown sugar
4 Tbsp hot sauce
1 Tbsp vinegar (white or apple cider)
3 Tbsp mustard
1 tsp garlic powder
1⁄4 tsp ground cloves
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1⁄2 lb deli ham (or about 8-10 slices)
1 pkg (12 oz) pretzel bites (or you can make your own)
Cheese (see tips and gallery below)
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- Prepare sauce: Combine all ingredients EXCEPT butter in medium sauce pan on LOW.
- Stir occasionally while allowing the sauce to thicken, about 15-20 min (you can do a lot of the prep work for the hamwiches while doing this).
- Remove pan from heat and stir in butter once sauce is to desired consistency.
- Assemble hamwiches: Cut pretzel bites in half, making sure to count how many you have and set aside.
- Roll up ham slices and cut into quarters (see gallery below). Set aside.
- Cut enough squares of cheese for the number of hamwiches you’re making (based on the number of pretzel bites you have).
- Heat frying pan/skillet to MED-HIGH and preheat oven to 425ºF. Dip the outside of the pretzel bite halves in the melted butter and place in hot pan. You can flatten them a little during this step which will help out later. (See gallery below.)
- Cook pretzel halves in pan 2 min; you’re looking for a grilled cheese-style “crisp.” Repeat until all pretzel bite halves have been pan fried.
- Assemble hamwiches on baking sheet. Brush the tops of the assembled hamwiches with melted butter then sprinkle with pretzel salt.
- Bake hamwiches until cheese is melted, about 8-10 min.
Wingin’ It Tips and Prep Gallery
New this year for some recipes will be the “Prep Gallery.” I want to make things as easy as possible to replicate these recipes and showing off tips and tricks with some photos seems smart to me. Check out the pics, then the tips!
The first pic is showing the rolled ham and me getting ready to make the center cut. The second pic shows the ham after being cut lined up next to the sliced pretzel bites. Stacks of cheese are in the distance. Taking the time to organize will speed up the rest considerably.
Speaking of that cheese in the distance, the prep steps noted above are deliberate so that you know how much cheese you’ll need before you start cutting. Half a small brick is probably plenty for planning purposes. Similarly, with each ham slice making four hamwiches, you can calculate how many slices you need and cut down on work/waste. For both the cheese and ham, go with what you love. I went with honey ham, and both cheddar and swiss cheeses.
The third pic shows the pretzel bite halves in the frying pan. You might notice there’s a small gap toward the top left. That’s deliberate. I add the bites in rings (outside first). The gap makes it clear where I started the ring, which helps in two ways. Most important, you can start removing in the same order. Less important for me, but possibly critical for many of you this also tells you which halves go together.