Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Ham'n it up.. Potatoes Au Gratin with Ham.. Split Pea Soup.. Home-Made Ham Salad

Well Sir...if'n yur like my wife and myself, Y'all had a nice Ham fer Easter Sunday, and of course, that means left over Ham. Here be a great recipe I got frum my German Grandmother about 40 years or so ago that will help ya use up some of that fine Ham y'all got left. I think Y'all just might enjoy it....

Cookies Note: Whenever possible, I like to use a good Cast Iron Dutch Oven, as I firmly believe that a well "seasoned" Cast Iron cookin utensil seems to add a better flavor....but y'all can use whatever kind of Dutch Oven ya prefer....

Potatoes au Gratin with Ham


4 lbs. russet potatoes, sliced into thin slices, 1/8" at most.
3 Tbsp. butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
4 medium garlic cloves, minced.
3 Tbsp. flour
4 Cups of a good chicken stock
1 bay leaf
1 Cup of shredded aged white cheddar
1/2 Cup shredded parmesean
1/4 Cup shredded white America cheese
Ham pieces, cut into bite-sized pieces.


-Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
-Meanwhile, melt butter in Dutch oven over medium high heat.
-Add onions and saute until soft and begins to brown, about 4 to 5 min.
-Add the garlic and saute for about 1 minute.
-Add flour and stir until browned, about 1 min.
-Slowly pour in all the Chicken Stock, scraping browned bits from the bottom of the Dutch Oven.
-Add bay leaf and simmer over Medium heat until stock is reduced and sauce gets thick, stirring occasionally, about 10 to 15 minutes.
-Add the cheese's, stirring to melt.
-Add sliced potatoes and Ham pieces in layers and stir to coat.
-Cover Dutch oven and place in oven to cook for about 50 minutes.
-Remove top of Dutch oven, stir slightly to recoat the potatoes and place back into oven to brown for 15 to 20 minutes or to your desired doneness.
-Remove Dutch oven from oven and let cool, uncovered, for about 10 minutes before serving.


...and here's a simple, but good recipe fer homemade Split Pea Soup. Now, there are many other recipe's and procedures, including pureeing, but this soup is easy to make and tastes almost as good as other, more involved recipe's....and uses a big old leftover meaty Ham-Bone...



1 lb of dried Split Peas
1 Meaty Ham Bone
3 Quarts of water
3 tsp’s Kosher Salt
2 tsp Pepper
½ tsp marjoram leaves
2 cups of Chopped Onions
¾ cup of Chopped Carrots

Put the Split Peas inta the water and bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand fer about 1 hour or so….

Add the Ham Bone, salt, pepper, marjoram and chopped onions…cover and simmer for 1 ½ to 2 hours. Let cool….remove Ham Bone and pick off all the good pieces and chunks of ham y’all can find and return them to the soup. Discard the ham bone or give it to the dog…yur choice.

Add the carrots and simmer until they’re tender…about 20 to 30 minutes or so. Bring soup up to yur desired taste by adding salt, pepper or other spices.

To serve…y’all can also boil up some hotdogs or Polish Sausage like I do, slice em and float em on the top of the full soup bowl. I also serve the soup over slices of toast…..


Now Sir....it won't be long now till "Prom Season" arrives...and fer all those anxious Mommy's & Daddy's out there who have a young lassie ya might be concerned about...Y'all might wanna consider gettin a dress like this fer yur daughter....

** Click To Enlarge if necessary...**


Now...somethin I always enjoy is good Home-Made Ham Salad. Y'all should really have Meat-Grinder when makin this.....

Simple Home-Made Ham Salad


Leftover Ham cut into chunks.
1 Jar of Sweet "Bread & Butter" Pickles, or Sweet Gherkins

First...grind up Ham chunks through the meat grinder into a large bowl.
Next....grind up the Sweet Pickles through the meat grinder into the same bowl.
Lastly...Blend ground ham and pickles, adding the Mayonnaise to your desired consistency, maybe adding a little sweet pickle juice if you desire...I do.

Voila...Home-Made Ham Salad.....