Category Archives: Ham

Ham and Swiss Quiche

This recipe originally came from my friend, Sarah S., and it is a winner.  I made it for my little sister’s baby shower and it was a HIT!  I didn’t even get a picture of it before it was completely gone!  So, next time I make it I will be sure to get a quick picture and add one into this post for you.  Be sure to read all the way to the Food for Thought for ways to make this recipe your own.  Quiche is any easy recipe to adapt to your family’s personal taste preferences!  And, although I made this for a brunch, quiche is also a great main dish for dinner. Have it with a salad and some good bread and you have a satisfying meal!

Ham and Swiss Quiche

1 pie crust
1/2 c. mayo
2 Tbsp. flour
1/2 c. half & half
8 oz. grated swiss cheese
1 c. diced ham (I used turkey ham – you can’t tell the difference)
1/4 c. green onion, sliced
2 eggs for standard pie pan, 3 for deep dish


Place the pie crust in the bottom of a pie pan (I lightly greased my pie pan). Place cheese, meat, and onion into the pie crust.

In a small bowl, combine mayo, flour, half & half, and eggs. Whisk well together and pour over the other ingredients.

Bake in a preheated oven for 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until cooked through.  Slice and serve hot.

Food for Thought: This is easy to bake up and then freeze as a whole.  To serve later, either bake until hot through as a whole pie or cut out a single slice and heat up in the microwave.  It makes for an easy single serve dinner that you can have ready in the freezer.

This is also an easy recipe for adding any veggies or meat you wish to add or remove from this recipe.  The egg mixture is really the base for anything you want to mix together or use up from your fridge.  That is the beauty of quiche – so easy and unlimited options of combinations!


Tomato and Asparagus “Carbonara”

True Spaghetti Carbonara, from what I understand (and please correct me if I am wrong) is made with spaghetti, eggs, pecorino Romano cheese, and bacon or pancetta.  This dish was a play on that tonight using penne and some fresh vegetables in place of the spaghetti.

The result was a perfectly light pasta dish that was delightful for dinner.  I was a little wary of throwing a raw egg into something that was already technically done cooking – you put the egg and cheese on the cooked pasta after you drain it and let the heat of the cooked pasta cook the egg and melt the cheese.  But, the egg cooked up just fine on the hot pasta.  Why was I worried.  And, this dish was just delicious!  We all loved it!  (Yes, all of us – even my two little peanuts!)

I served it with a caprese salad on the side.  Yum!



Tomato and Asparagus “Carbonara”

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light September 2012

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed
2 tsp. garlic, minced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
8 oz. pancetta, diced
1/2 c. pecorino Romano cheese, finely grated
salt/pepper to taste
1 large egg
8 oz. multi-grain penne pasta
1/4 c. fresh basil, chopped


Heat a large pot of water to boiling over high heat.

Meanwhile, in a large sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium high heat.  Add asparagus and sauté for 3-4 minutes.  Add garlic and sauté for 1 more minute.  Add tomatoes and pancetta and continue sautéing until tomatoes and asparagus are tender, about 5-6 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine egg, cheese, and salt/pepper.  Stir with a whisk to blend.

When water is boiling, add pasta and cook to al dente (7-10 minutes). Drain pasta (DO NOT RINSE PASTA) and return to pan.  Toss pasta with egg mixture immediately. Add tomato mixture, tossing until sauce thickens.  Divide equally among plates and top with fresh basil. Serve immediately.

Husband Rating: 9 out of 10

Food for Thought: The original recipe had no pancetta in it and although we liked the flavor that it added, if you were looking for a “Meatless Monday” idea, you could easily leave that out.  I think that there could be other vegetables that would be delicious in this recipe.  Broccoli and spinach come to mind right away.  What are your thoughts?  What veggies do you think might work nicely in this dish?

Crispy Pesto Gnocchi with Tomatoes and Ham

Ok, I know it has been a long time since I have blogged… the start up of our fall schedule and just life in general has been a bit crazy, pushing things like blogging to the side for a while.  But, I promise you, this recipe is worth the wait!  It was delicious!!!!  So yummy!  A perfect fall recipe on a crisp Minnesota evening. Well, it doesn’t have to be a fall recipe, but it was a great meal for us.  It seemed extra Fall-y (is that a word?) because we also had it with some oven roasted squash, which I love!

Crispy Pesto Gnocci with Tomatoes and Ham

Recipe adapted from

1 pkg. pre-made potato gnocchi
2 Tbsp. pesto
1 pt. cherry tomatoes, halved
1 c. ham cubed
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
parmesan cheese, for topping

Boil gnocchi for 2-3 minutes or until they begin to float.  Drain and set aside.

In a large skillet, cook ham until hot and just beginning to brown.  Remove from pan. 

Add olive oil and garlic.  Cook about 30 sec. to 1 min. until garlic becomes just fragrant.  Add gnocchi in a single layer and cook until it begins to crisp on one side (about 3-4 minutes).  Shake pan and cook additional 3-4 minutes until golden and crispy on all sides.

Stir in pesto and tomatoes and ham and serve with parmesan on top.  Yum!

Husband Rating: 10 out of 10

Food for Thought: I think another nice addition to this meal might be some chopped spinach.  That always seems to go nicely.  You could also easily leave out the ham if you wanted a vegetarian version.  Check out the blog that I got the recipe from.  It’s adorable.  It’s written by a girl in Iowa who loves to cook and loves to run.  Hmmmm, a midwest girl who cooks and runs… sound familiar???   🙂

Homemade Mac-N-Cheese (with hidden veggies!)

This recipe is a great way to sneak in some veggies.  The base of the cheese sauce is a Butternut Squash “Bechamel”.  I have to admit that it is fun to use fancy cooking terms like bechamel like it’s nothing!  I honestly didn’t even know what a bechamel sauce was until earlier this year (a simple Italian white sauce that is often the base for other sauces).  This turned out delicious and the boys loved it.  The batch made enough for two meals for our family.  I baked one up right away and froze the rest.

Homemade Mac-N-Cheese

Adapted from Cooking Light, September 2011

1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed (about 5-6 cups)
2 c. chicken broth
2 1/4 c. milk
4 garlic cloves
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1/4 c. fat-free plain Greek yogurt
2 1/4 c. shredded Gruyere cheese
1 1/2 c. Romano cheese
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese, divided
2 c. turkey ham, cubed
1 pound uncooked noodles (I used medium shells, but anything that holds the cheese sauce works – spirals, elbows, etc.)
cooking spray
2 tsp. olive oil
1 c. panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine squash, broth, milk, and garlic in a saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat to medium and simmer until squash is tender, about 25 minutes.

Place hot squash mixture in a blender.  Add salt, pepper, and Greek yogurt.  Remove the center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape) and secure the lid on the blender.  Place a towel over the lid to catch any splatters.  Blend until smooth.  (You may need to do this in two batches depending on blender size; I did.)

Pour squash mixture into a bowl and stir in the Gruyere, Romano, and half of the Parmesan cheese.

Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain the pasta and add to the cheese mixture.  Stir in the ham at the same time and then spread evenly in a baking dish coated with cooking spray.

In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat.  Add panko and cook until golden brown (about 2-4 minutes).  Add in remaining Parmesan cheese and spread evenly over the pasta.

Bake uncovered at 375 for 25 minutes or until bubbly.  (If freezing, cover with tin foil and place in freezer before baking.  On serving day, simply thaw in fridge and bake as above or bake frozen covered for about 30 minutes before uncovering and baking additional 25-35 minutes until bubbly, hot, and golden on top).

Food for Thought: Another way to spice up this dish would be to dice up some red pepper into it or put some frozen peas in it.   I also thought that instead of ham, a few cans of tuna (drained) would be tasty. 

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