Wednesday, March 23, 2016

#3805 - Baked Ham Pasta

(by Shirley McNevich)

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
2 cups Half 'n Half
2 cups whole milk
1lb. shredded Swiss cheese
2/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1lb. bowtie pasta
2 cups cooked bite sized ham pieces
1 1/2 cups frozen baby sweet peas (thawed and drained)
Crunchy Topping: 1 cup Marzetti sea salt/cracked pepper croutons; 2/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese; 1 TBSP butter (melted)

Cook bowtie pasta in salted water according to box directions--drain but DO NOT rinse. In a Dutch oven over medium heat and 1/2 cup butter--melt. While whisking, slowly add the flour and whisk until smooth. While whisking add dry mustard, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. While whisking add half 'n half and milk--whisk for about 10 minutes or until thickened. While stirring with a spoon add all of the shredded Swiss cheese and 2/3 cup of the shredded Parmesan cheese--stir until mixed. Remove from heat--add drained pasta, ham pieces and drained peas-- toss with a spoon to mix. Pour the whole mixture into a greased 9 x 13 glass baking dish. Place the croutons into a Ziploc bag--close the bag and crush the croutons with a rolling pin until finely ground. In a bowl add ground croutons, 2/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese and the melted butter--stir to mix. Sprinkle the crouton mixture evenly over the pasta mixture. Bake at 350 degrees 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Let it stand for a few minutes before serving.

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