Last night was amazing because we were home for an entire evening. I mean we did have to go out and deliver our daughter to the Murder Mystery Night at the local library and pick her up. Stop and get gas for the van and have a few minutes to chat with friends waiting for their children at the end of the evening too but other than that we were home!
That meant time to clean and plan. Despite what some people think when I tell them about my blog I do not spend all of my time in the kitchen cooking for my family. Yes, I do plan and am organized in my menus (five meals out of a pork loin and a ham). I try to use every last little bite so that nothing goes to waste.
I still had a bit of leftover ham even after making Cuban Paninis yesterday so I decided to make a Ham Tetrazzini. I have made Turkey Tetrazzini before but I thought a Ham Tetrazzini sounded interesting so I gave it a try. Also, with the extra time home I poached chicken and planned the next few meals because time will be scarce the next few days. I have a Chicken Divan in the refrigerator for dinner tonight and extra chicken for a Slow Cooker Chicken Caesar Salad next. In one night home I now have two extra meals ready to go for the next two nights. Lots of planning but it really does work and save time and money in the end.
This was off the charts yummy. It was like an extra creamy adult macaroni and cheese. Everyone had seconds and there was still enough left for lunch the next day.
I served this with broccoli and a green spinach salad.
2 tablespoon butter
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup flour
4 cups fat-free half and half
1 cup parmesan cheese, grated (divided)
8 ounces cream cheese
- 2 cups Monterey jack, shredded or (1 cup Swiss and 1 cup Monterey jack)
1 (12 ounce) box of pasta, cooked al dente according to package directions
3 cups pre-cooked ham, cut into bit size pieces
- Preheat oven to 350. Prepare a 13 x 9 casserole dish with non-stick spray.
- Melt butter in saute pan.
- Add onion, celery, pepper and salt to butter.
- Saute until vegetables are tender and onions are turning translucent.
- Add flour and stir until vegetables are coated.
- Add fat-free half and half and stir continually until sauce is smooth.
- Reduce heat and stir for 5-10 minutes as sauce begins to thicken.
- Remove sauce from heat.
- Add 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, 2 cups of cheese and the cream cheese, stirring until cheese melts.
- Add in the pasta and ham to the cheese mixture. Stir until well blended.
- Pour the mixture into the casserole dish and sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup of Parmesan over the top of the casserole.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes until well browned on top and bubbling.
- Remove casserole dish from oven and allow to sit at least 10 minutes prior to serving.