(4 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
In case you still have a few slices of that ham left and are truly sick of ham sandwiches, don’t let it go to waste. Here’s an easy recipe that can make use of those last few slices.
* 1/3 oz. dried porcini mushrooms or 6oz. fresh button mushrooms
* 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, if using fresh mushrooms, plus 6 tbsp.
* 12 oz Rigatoni
* 1/3 cup all purpose flour
* 2 1/2 cups of milk (low fat is fine)
* pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
* salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
* 4 oz of Fontina or Swiss cheese, cut into julienne strips
* 6 oz ham, roughly chopped
If using porcini, place in a bowl with lukewarm water ans soap until softened about 30 minutes. Drain. squeeze out excess water and chop finely; set aside. . If using fresh mushrooms, cut off and discard the stems, wipe clean with a towel and thinly slice. In a frying pan over medium heat, melt 2 tbsp. butter. Add the sliced mushrooms and sauté fir 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
In a large pot bring 5 quarts of salted water to a boil. Add rigatoni and cook for about 6 minutes; they should be very al dente. Drain the pasta and transfer to a bowl. Ass 2 1/2 tbsp of the butter and toss well.
Preheat an oven to 350 F. In a sauce pan melt 2 1/2 tbsp. of the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and stir until smooth, about 2 minutes. Stirring constantly, gradually add the milk. Continue to stir until it thickens and is smooth and creamy, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat, ass the porcini or fresh mushrooms, sprinkle with the nutmeg and stir well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Grease an 8 by 12 inch oven proof dish with the remaining butter. Arrange 1/3 of the rigatoni in the dish. Sprinkle one third of the cheese and ham over the top and spoon on one third of the sauce. Repeat the layers in the same order two more times, ending with sauce.
Place in the oven and bake until heated through and bubbly, about 20 minutes. Serve at once.
My daughter says to increase the sauce by half for a creamier dish