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7.3.12

HAM PASTA - SONKÁS TÉSZTA


This is my interpretation of this well-known Hungarian pasta dish. As I never cared for the version with beaten egg whites, I have been making it with whipping and sour creams it seems like forever. The tastiest is either homemade or commercial fresh pasta, but even dry pasta is good prepared this way. Discard the starchy cooking liquid and rinse and drain the pasta thoroughly. The cooking liquid just acts like glue; it does not enhance this dish. Always reheat leftovers in the oven. [Microwaving would change the delightful texture.] Sometimes, though not always, I add tiny, cooked asparagus chunks or broccoli florets before baking the dish. As for the ham, a small piece is plenty; this time I used Canadian back bacon, which is a type of ham. Accompanied with a green salad, coleslaw, Waldorf salad or with pickled beets, ham pasta makes a delicious one-dish meal.

8 cups cooked pasta
1 cup cooked chopped asparagus or broccoli florets, optional
1 cup diced onions
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tbsp olive oil
2/3 cup Canadian back bacon
1/8 cup melted butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whipping cream
salt and pepper to taste
cooking spray
1/2 cup shredded white cheddar cheese

• Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water until soft, but not mushy.
• If using, cook the asparagus spears or the broccoli florets in a different pot until al dente.
• Drain and set the vegetables aside to cool.
• Meanwhile chop the onions and mince the garlic.
• Place the olive oil in a non-stick fry pan and add the chopped onions and the minced garlic.
• Cook the onions and the garlic on medium heat until translucent.
• Add the chopped ham and continuing to sauté over low heat for 4 minutes.
• Remove onion mixture from heat and set aside.
• Drain the cooked pasta into a large sieve and place the sieve inside a big bowl.
• Run cold water over the pasta, filling the bowl with cold water.
• Drain and repeat filling up the bowl with cold water until the water runs crystal clear.
• Drain the pasta until no water collects under the sieve.
• Place the drained pasta in a large bowl and add the melted butter.
• Toss to combine.
• In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream and the whipping cream.
• Add the cream mixture to the pasta and toss.
• Chop the asparagus spears or the broccoli florets and add to the pasta.
• Add the onion mixture to the pasta and toss to combine.
• Taste the pasta and adjust the salt content. Add ground pepper to taste.
• Lightly spray an ovenproof baking dish and transfer the pasta mixture to the baking dish.
• Grate the white cheddar on the top and bake in a preheated 350F oven for 35-40 minutes.







3 comments:

  1. Nothing like Hungarian flavors and Italian pasta mixed together. I just love it...love the creaminess of the sour cream, the smoky flavor of the delicious ham. So delicious and satisfying...Yumm!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Zsuzsa, it looks delicious, like a lighter version of all those baked dishes with lots of cheese. I must make it one day with sour milk (I use it instead of sour cream).

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am hopelessly in love with 14% sour cream Sissi.

    Italian pasta? I guess you are right Elisabeth, it looks a bit Italian, I used the thin setting on my pasta machine. The pasta recipe was Hungarian but the pasta machine is Italian made. The more I think about it the more Canadian this dish sounds. [multicultural]

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I began to post recipes for my family and it turned out to be a work in progress. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has over 900 recipes of Hungarian and international recipes. My recipes are organized into a cookbook format. On top of the page click on the cookbook to get access to all my recipes. If I ever figure out how to add a printer friendly gadget I will add it. In the meantime feel free to cut and paste. Happy cooking!

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