MY COOKBOOK

MY COOKBOOK
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3.6.12

CHEESY PASTA WITH BROCCOLI AND HAM


I make several variations of cheesy pasta; this is probably the fastest and the most favoured. You can use regular or marble cheddar, but the dish will look and taste a little different.

1/2 batch of wide cooked home made pasta
[alternatively you can use 10 fresh lasagna noodles or 3 fresh lasagna sheets]
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 head of broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
1-1/2 cups milk
1 cup light cream cheese
1/2 + 1/4 cup white cheddar cheese, shredded
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup ham cubes
1/4 cup breadcrumbs

• If using homemade pasta, make 1/2 batch of the noodle recipe first.
• Cut the noodles one inch wide. [Homemade noddles will increase in size when cooked.]
• Meanwhile preheat the oven to 350F.
• Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.
• Cook the pasta until pleasantly soft, but do not overcook.
• Drain the pasta and place it in a large mixing bowl.
• Add 1 Tbsp olive oil and toss to coat. Set the pasta aside.
• Blanche the broccoli florets until they are dark green in color.
• Drain broccolis and set them aside.
• In a medium sized pot, bring the milk to the boil.
• While the milk heats up, place the cream cheese in a medium sized bowl.
• Gradually whisk some of the hot milk into the cream cheese to incorporate.
• Transfer cheese mixture back to the pot.
• Add 1/2 cup of the shredded white cheddar, whisking all the while.
• Bring the cheese sauce to a slow simmer and cook until slightly thickened.
• Add salt and pepper to taste.
• Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta and toss to coat.
• Add the cubed ham and toss.
• Add the broccoli florets and toss it into the pasta very gently.
• Spray an ovenproof dish with cooking spray.
• Transfer the pasta mixture to the prepared dish.
• Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/4 cup white cheddar cheese and the breadcrumbs.
• Bake in a preheated oven until the cheese melts and the pasta and breadcrumbs are lightly toasted.
• Remove from the oven, cover and let it rest for 10 minutes before serving.
• This is even better if reheated the next day.
 

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It began with posting a few recipes on line for my family. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has more than 1000 Hungarian and International recipes. What started out as a private project turned into a well visited blog. The number of visitors long passed the two million mark. I organized my recipes into an on-line cookbook. On top of the page click on the cookbook to access the recipes. I am not profiting from my blog, so my visitors will not be harassed with advertising or flashy gadgets. Feel free to cut and paste my recipes for your own use. Publication is permitted as long as it is in your own words and with your own photographs. However, I would ask you for an acknowledgement and link-back to my blog. This is to my old on-line friends and visitors: policing the comment section for spam and answering questions has become a chore. Good wishes to you all, happy cooking and keep on feeding your people with good food.

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