While most people mark Thanksgiving with a roast turkey, some opt for ham instead. It’s the perfect size for smaller families, and often takes less time and labour to prepare. One of the best things about serving ham is having leftovers. If you don’t have leftover ham on hand, it’s definitely worth buying a fresh ham for these delicious recipes.
Our Ham and Apple Risotto is a delicious side dish for fall. Creamy, slow-cooked rice serves as the backdrop for the pairing of savoury diced ham and Parmesan with the sweet-tart flavour of apple. This recipe goes well with chicken or turkey, and roasted vegetables.
Frozen hash brown potatoes make our Cajun Ham Hash a breeze to make. Chili powder can serve as a stand-in if Cajun seasoning is unavailable. Serve with eggs — any style — for an easy weekend brunch, or a satisfying meal at any time of day.
Our Ham and Broccoli Strata is another brunch favourite. Like a savoury bread pudding or French toast casserole, this strata features bread cubes baked in a cheesy egg batter dotted with broccoli, ham, and green onion. This recipe can be made ahead to allow the flavours to marry overnight, then popped in the oven in the morning for a hearty, comforting meal.
HAM AND APPLE RISOTTO
1/4 cup (50 mL) butter, divided
1 cup (250 mL) diced Golden Delicious apple
1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped onion
1 cup (250 mL) arborio rice
1 cup (250 mL) diced cooked ham
1/4 tsp (1 mL) freshly ground pepper
3/4 cup (175 mL) apple juice
4 cups (1 L) chicken broth
1/3 cup (75 mL) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp (15 mL) chopped fresh parsley
Melt 2 tbsp (25 mL) butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add apple and sauté until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer apple to a bowl; set aside.
Melt remaining 2 tbsp (25 mL) butter in same saucepan. Add onion and sauté until softened, about 4 minutes. Stir in rice, ham and pepper; sauté for 2 minutes. Stir in apple juice and cook, stirring, until apple juice is almost absorbed. Meanwhile, heat broth to simmering. Add 1 cup (250 mL) hot broth to rice mixture; cook, stirring frequently, until almost all of liquid is absorbed. Add remaining 3 cups (750 mL) hot broth, 1 cup (250 mL) at a time, cooking and stirring constantly until mixture is creamy, rice is tender and most of liquid is absorbed, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in apple and Parmesan cheese, stirring until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with parsley. Serve immediately. Serves 4.
CAJUN HAM HASH
3 tbsp (40 mL) oil
2 cups (500 mL) diced cooked ham
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) sliced green onions
1 cup (250 mL) diced red bell pepper
3 cups (750 mL) frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed
3/4 tsp (3 mL) Cajun seasoning
1/2 tsp (2 mL) thyme, crumbled
Heat oil in a large nonstick frypan over medium heat. Add ham, onions and red pepper; saute for 5 minutes. Stir in hash browns, Cajun seasoning and thyme. Cook until hash browns are heated through and slightly crisp, about 5 to 7 minutes. Serves 4
HAM AND BROCCOLI STRATA
8 cups (2 L) bread cubes
2 cups (500 mL) frozen chopped broccoli
2 cups (500 mL) diced cooked ham
8 eggs, lightly beaten
3 cups (750 mL) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 cups (750 mL) 2% or homo milk
2/3 cup (150 mL) sliced green onions
1 tsp (5 mL) salt
1 tsp (5 mL) dry mustard
1/4 tsp (1 mL) white pepper
1/4 tsp (1 mL) hot pepper sauce
Layer bread cubes, broccoli and ham in a lightly greased 9×13 inch (23×33 cm) baking dish. Combine remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly. Pour over bread mixture; cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Bake, uncovered, at 325°F (160°C) for 50 to 55 minutes. Serves 6 to 8.
ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen’s column on healthy eating for busy families runs Wednesdays in the Calgary Herald’s food section. For tips on cooking, food safety or household matters, email [email protected] or visit us at ATCOBlueFlameKitchen.com.