By now your Easter ham may be all eaten up and gone but at our household we are still enjoying it and even have a couple of baggies full in the freezer. We certainly have enjoyed it in sandwiches with mustard but this year I choose to do so much more and perhaps a little more creative meals.
A couple of simple things we have done with our leftover ham is frying it up for breakfast; quick and easy. Also making a ham, pineapple, and cheese quesadilla; simple and quick – cut the ham into bite size pieces, layer with pineapple tidbits and your favorite cheeses (I used cheddar and mozzarella) on a tortilla, cover with another flour tortilla and cook in a sauce pan to melt the cheese, and serve.
But I also enjoyed a few more complicated and full meals with the ham. First I used it in this delicious masterpiece created by Aimee of Pineapple Fried Rice, I used brown rice and the nutty flavor add just the right deliciousness to it. We had a hard time with size portion control and gobbled it all right up. Next time I will definitely make a double batch for leftovers. Our family loved it.
I also discovered this Red Beans and Rice recipe from Lynda’s Recipe Box and prepared this soup last night. I changed it up just enough to call it my own and used canned kidney beans instead of dried red beans to cut cooking time by alot. I used the same spice and it definitely had a southern kick to it; a little too much for my mom but Craig and I really enjoyed it. It had a jambayla feel to it.
1 15 oz can red kidney beans (drained)
7 oz smoked sausage (horseshoe shaped) cut into 1/4 inch slices
leftover ham (probably about 4 slices worth) cut into bite size pieces or smaller
2 stalks celery – cut into bite size pieces
1 half white onion (or yellow, your choice) – chopped
4 to 5 mini orange, red, and yellow peppers – cut into 1/4 inch slices
4 cups water
3 garlic cloves – minced
2 Tbs olive oil
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 bay leaves (you place these in whole and remove before serving)
1/4 to 1/2 tsp red cayenne pepper (thus the kick)
1/4 to 1/2 tsp pepper (to taste)
salt to taste (I did not add any because there is salt in the ham and sausage)
cooked rice (I used brown rice because I had it on hand)
1) Pour oil into a large saucepan and heat
2) Add celery, onion, and peppers
3) Saute until the onion is transparent
4) Add the garlic, ham, and sausage; saute until meat is sufficiently browned
5) Add water, beans, and spices
6) Simmer for about 15 minutes to let the flavors blend – longer if you want
7) Remove the bay leaves
8) Serve over rice
We hope you like this and the other leftover ham ideas. If you have a favorite please feel free to share with us.