In a medium sized bowl stir water and salt. Slowly add in corn meal, mixing with your hand, until a soft dough forms. Add water a tablespoon at a time if the dough cracks when molded into a disk, or add a tablespoon at a time of corn meal if dough cannot hold its shape. Set dough aside.
In a sauté pan on medium heat add canola oil. Stir in pepper and ham. Sauté until ham is crisp on edges and pepper is tender, about 4-5 minutes.
Add pepper and ham mixture to dough and top with jack cheese. Mix dough with hands until all ingredients are evenly dispersed.
Divide dough evenly into 8 balls and flatten each into a disc. Set aside.
Preheat a large pan on medium heat. Once heated, add discs and cook for 7-8 minutes per side, or until outside is crisp and arepas sound hollow when tapped. You can also use an Arepa Maker instead of a pan.
Enjoy arepas with a bit of butter, extra cheese or avocado!