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Mac and Cheese with Ham

Posted by AngiGrrrl on 01/22/2010 in Recipies |

Have you been to oui, chef? If not, you should.  I got this mac and cheese recipe from him the other day.  It is the BOMB.  Seriously.  We ate it all in 2 days. Mind you, I modified the recipe a tiny bit to suit my household, but don’t we all?  That being said, he still deserves the credit for this dish. He got it from a cookbook that he credits on his site.  Look there for more info.
  
Mac and Cheese with Ham

Ingredients:
1 pound elbow macaroni
3 tbsp olive oil
1/2 pound ham steak, diced
6 tbsp butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups 2% milk
1 pound coarsely grated cheddar cheese
2 tbsp prepared horseradish
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350℉ and lightly butter a 9×13″ baking dish.
Put a large pot of salted water on to boil for the pasta.  Cook per package instructions until just al dente, drain and rinse with cold water to prevent sticking.
In a large, heavy bottomed saute pan or skillet set over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.  Add the ham and cook until browned (this too me about 5 minutes) remove from the pan and set aside.
Set the pan back over medium heat, melt the butter, whisk in the flour and cook, whisking constantly (this took me about 3 minutes) until the mixture turns a light tan color.
Add the milk to the pan, whisking constantly, and bring the sauce to a simmer.  Simmer for about 2 minutes or until the mixture starts to thicken.  Take the pan off the heat and stir in the grated cheddar and horseradish.
Pour the pasta into the pan of cheese sauce, add the ham and stir gently to combine.  Adjust seasoning to taste with salt and pepper and pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish, sprinkle the top with the grated Parmesan.
Bake in the oven, uncovered, until the top is golden and bubbly (about 35 minutes in my oven).  Next, take the dish from the oven and sprinkle the top with a light coating of breadcrumbs, put it back in the oven for 5-10 more minutes.

    Let this dish sit on your counter for about 10 minutes before serving. It is even better the next day…. if you have any leftovers!

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