Tag Archives: peas

Ham Casserole

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Here is another simple-to-make casserole that is filling, and has a few options.

Ham Casserole

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (about 10-12 oz.) diced (leftover) ham
  • 8 oz cooked noodles or macaroni (cook as label directs, drain)
  • 5 oz. frozen peas, thawed
  • 4 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 Tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • dash of cayenne pepper(optional)
  • 2 cups milk
  • poppyseeds for garnish

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Mix together in a large bowl the ham, noodles and peas.
  • In saucepan cook the onion in the butter. When onion is soft, add flour, salt and both peppers. Stir to cook roux. Do not brown.
  • Remove saucepan from heat and add the milk. Return to heat and cook over medium heat until thickened.
  • Pour over ingredients in bowl, Stir together to mix well. Pour into a greased 8″ x 8″ baking pan. Sprinkle generously with poppyseeds.
  • Bake uncovered for 30 minutes. If made ahead and refrigerated, bake for 45 minutes.

First, while the ham can be leftover from another meal, I find that I can buy ham steak and generally get a couple good recipes from the steak. I try to get steaks that are about 1/4 inch thick so that the diced chunks are a good size.

Second, I have marked the cayenne pepper as optional. I really like a good shot of it in this recipe; I will use almost 1/4 teaspoon. But that might be a bit much for some people, or children, so you might want to reduce or eliminate that heat.

Finally, I added the word large to the description of the bowl in the second step of the directions. I started with too small of a bowl, and had to change midway to my large 4 quart bowl. What with the ham, noodles and peas, you need to have enough space to mix it all before putting it in the cooking pan.

When I first pulled this recipe out, I got nervous because it requires making a roux, and I have never done that. I stirred a lot of things for Marlys,- soups and rissoto, but she always made the roux. I do remember her saying a couple things about making a roux; first, the amount of flour is equal to the amount of fat, and second, you have to make certain that the flour is cooked. I must say, I was successful, and the whole operation was easier than I thought. I just didn’t rush the cooking of the flour, or the thickening of the milk.

I used Farfalle pasta- that is what I had- and the bow-ties ended up sticking up in the air so they got slightly over-cooked because they were not down in the sauce. I guess that is why the ingredients say to use noodles or macaroni; they probably lay down better.

Ham Casserole 007

Three Bean & Rice Casserole

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This is an easy to throw together casserole that has a wonderful taste. I like the olives in the casserole; they bring an earthiness to the dish. Mostly, you will be opening cans and draining the content in making this casserole. It all comes together in a very short time. There is a close-up photo of the plate down below,in which most of the ingredients can be identified.

The recipe comes from long ago, before inflation reduced the size of most cans of food. So while the ingredients are given in nominal size, you will probably find the 16 oz cans are now just over 15 ounces, and the 4 ounce can is more like 3.8. I think you just need to go with the flow- I did. It was interesting that I had all the ingredients in the pantry except for the onion. Where the ingredients call for a dash of a spice, I used about 1/8 teaspoon, but I think you could easily use more- perhaps 1/4 teaspoon.

Three Bean & Rice Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 1 can (16 oz.) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (16 oz.) garbonzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (16 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (16 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can (4 oz.) chopped green chilies (ortegas), drained
  • 2 cups long-grain rice
  • dash cayenne
  • dash hot sauce (Tabasco)
  • dash cumin powder
  • dash black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 10 oz. frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup pimento stuffed olives
  • 1/2 cup black olives, sliced

Directions

  • In a 5 quart heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven (treated with cooking spray or 1 Tablespoon olive oil), over medium-high heat, saute the onion and garlic until tender.
  • Add the water, all the beans, tomatoes, chilies, rice, cayenne, hot sauce, cumin, black pepper and salt. Heat to boiling, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Add the peas, and both types of olives. Stir and replace the lid. Turn off the heat and let stand for about 20 minutes

This recipe can be separated into smaller casseroles, and refrigerated for storage.
The original recipe shows this as making 8 servings of less than 300 calories each, with about 5 grams of fat each.

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