Baked Pasta Gratin

Who else has a TON of leftover ham from Easter Sunday? Anybody? Just me? I know you are out there. This is how I used to use some of my leftovers. Trust and believe that you will also find yourself munching on ham while you cook. Maybe its just me? This recipe is essentially a pantry raid to use leftovers and use what I have to make something new with the Easter ham. There can be only so many days where you essentially have the same dinner over and over again.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb of short pasta (I used farfalle, the little cute bow ties)
  • 1 cup (or more) of leftover Easter ham
  • Minced garlic (I used min 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 small shallots
  • 1 bay leaf (dried)
  • 1 jar of tomato sauce (mine was a basil, garlic sauce)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Crushed red pepper
  • 1/3 -1/2 cup of panko bread crumbs (for topping)
  • Extra sharp cheddar cheese (I used at least 1 cup)
  • Shredded mozzarella (I used at least 1 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons of butter (or butter infused Olive OIl)
  • Extra virgin Olive Oil (or oil of your preference)

Pots:

  • One large pot to boil your pasta
  • 1 deep pot to cook shallots, onion, garlic, heat up sauce & sear ham
  • 1 9 X13 deep pan for the whole thing to hang out.
  • 1 small pan for the gratin

How to make it:

  • Preheat your oven to 350.
    Fill your large pot with water and bring it to a boil.
    In your deep pan, add some oil and let it warm up.

Get a mise en place ready:

  • Chop the onion and shallots
  • Mince your garlic
  • Cut your ham up into bite size pieces.
  • Get the rest of your ingredients

How to make it pt.2

  • In your deep pan, sauté the onions, garlic and shallots. Season with Salt and pepper.(3 minutes)
  • Add your ham, let them all mingle and say hi to each other (3 minutes)

  • Boil your pasta. My pasta instructions said to boil it for around 12 mins, I let it boil to 10. We are putting all of this in the oven, so it will finish there. When you add the pasta to the pan, add the sauce jar to the ham mixture, as well as the bay leaf & the crush red pepper. Add as much or as little of the red pepper, I like spicy, so I added around 1 tablespoon. If you want to beef this up, add 2 Tablespoons of tomato paste!!
  • Once the pasta is all finished and the ham mixture is all finished mellowed out. Add up to 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
  • In a small pot, add the panko and butter. Let them all hang out
  • Put your drained pasta in the pot it boiled and the ham mixture. Mix until everything incorporated well. Set aside.

At this stage, the oven should be all ready for you, the ham mixture is ready and pasta should be done. This is where you make everything come together.

  • In your 9 X13, add some cheddar cheese and mozzarella in the bottom (the cheesier the better. In my opinion, anyways). Add half of the pasta. Add Cheddar or Mozzarella. Then the rest of the pasta mixture. Add more cheddar and mozzarella.

  • On the top of the pan sprinkle the panko mixture. Add to the oven (350) for 20 minutes.
    When everything is done, take out of the oven and set aside for 5 minutes.

It will look like so:

Yum! Do not give to the westiepoo

Yummy!

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