Thursday, December 30, 2010

Wham, Bam, Thank You Ham!

Cheesy Ham and Veggie Bake
The split pea soup was delicious, but unfortunately it wasn't enough to rid the fridge of all the excess ham. Another solution had to be concocted. I've said before that I'm a fan of one-dish meals and this certainly foots the bill on a chilly New Years Eve Eve. This was easy to throw together and helped purge the fridge of those pesky post-Christmas leftovers. I can add this to my ever-growing list of mac and cheese recipes. Definitely not vegetarian-friendly, but delicious nonetheless.


- 2 c. diced cooked ham
- 1 lb. mixed bag of broccoli and cauliflower, cut into bit-sized pieces
- 1 lb. corkscrew pasta
- 1 large shallot, peeled and minced
- 2 c. heavy cream
- 1-2 c. milk
- 2 c. grated extra sharp white cheddar cheese
- 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
- t tsp. fresh thyme
- 1 c. breadcrumbs
- 4 Tbsp. butter
- 1/4 c. flour
- salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350˚F and butter a 9x13" baking dish. Set aside.

Melt butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add shallot and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add flour and whisk together with butter for 1 minute. Slowly add cream and milk, about a half cup at a time, allowing the mixture to thicken over medium-low heat. Add cheese, thyme, and mustard to mixture and stir over medium-low heat, allowing cheese to melt. Remove Dutch oven from stove and add ham, broccoli, and cauliflower, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Meanwhile, boil pasta according to package directions to al dente, about 9 minutes. Drain and add to ham and cheese mixture. Mix ingredients thoroughly then spread evenly into prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with an even layer of breadcrumbs and bake 35-40 minutes until sauce starts to bubble and breadcrumbs become golden brown. Remove from oven and allow 5 minutes to cool before serving. Yum.

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