Tuesday, April 6, 2010

RECIPE: Cheddar Cheese and Macaroni with Ham

This week at I Blame My Mother, we're working on Rachael Ray recipes for FNCCC.  I learned to cook easy and delicious meals by watching Rachael Ray on Food Network about 7 years ago.  If it weren't for her, I'd probably still hate onions (I still don't like this raw or boiled...I have to cook them until they are "caramelized").  I was so excited to learn she was coming to Atlanta for a book signing in November 2004.  So my sweet husband drove me and two of my girlfriends to Peachtree Street:

I was really disappointed in her as a person.  On her show 30 Minute Meals, she was so bubbly and fun, but in real life, she had a very bad attitude.  I still watch her show, but not as faithfully as before.  

I have several of her cookbooks.  The recipe I'm using today is partially from Cheddar Cheese and Macaroni from her Rachael Ray 30 Minute Meals 2 cookbook and from her Macaroni and Cheese with Ham recipe.

Macaroni and Cheese with Ham
1 pound elbow macaroni, cooked 8 minutes and drained
3 Tablespoons butter
3 Tablespoons flour
1-1/2 cup whole milk
3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 slices of deli sliced ham

In a medium size pot, melt butter over medium heat.  Whisk in flour.  Gently cook for two minutes.  Slowly add milk while whisking.  Gently bring milk to a simmer, whisking frequently.  Once it has thickened, add cheddar cheese and stir until melted and smooth.  Season with nutmeg, ground mustard and salt.  Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta and mix well.  Chop deli ham and stir into the pasta and cheese sauce.  Serve warm.

The kids loved this! 

I made extra cheese sauce and going to try to freeze it into quart bags.  We'll see how it thaws out.  I've heard it can become really watery.  We'll see...

Be sure to visit I Blame My Mother to see what everyone is cooking up this week!


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Susie said...

That's too bad! She really seems like a person I would love to hang out with. Maybe you caught her on a bad day?

Melinda said...

You actually met Rachel Ray? Wow! Recipe looks yummy - even if she wasn't as pleasant as you expected!

Liz said...

That looks yummy! I've never added ham to Mac & Cheese. I bet my boys would like it!
I'm having a Leftover Ham Linky if you would like to join us!

Lisa@BlessedwithGrace said...

Love the mac and cheese! Thanks for sharing your recipe and linking to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.

SnoWhite {Finding Joy in My Kitchen} said...

That looks wonderful! A great way to use up leftover Easter ham :)

Hillary (First Yr Wife) said...

That's kinda sad that she wasn't friendly in real life. Too bad.
The recipe looks great though!

Sarah said...

Perfect timing...I too have lots of cubed ham from Easter. Too bad Ms. Ray isn't as nice as she seems. I have never gone to a book signing but might go to the book tour Pioneer Woman is doing here in Orlando in May....can't imagine that she is anything but sweet.

Ticia said...

What a shame she wasn't as friendly in person. Maybe she was just having a bad day.
I love her mac and cheese recipe.

mub said...

I'm so ashamed to admit this but I just don't like homemade mac & cheese... It's pathetic really, but I can never get it just right when I make it and I always feel disappointed! Maybe I'll try again someday *L*

Deborah said...

So sad to hear that she disappointed you in real life. I've never met her, but have always wanted to. Hopefully she was just having an off day and she's not always like that! This mac and cheese does sound wonderful, though! Thanks for participating in Saturdays with Rachael Ray!

Anonymous said...

How did the sauce thaw for you?

Anonymous said...

Hello, I wanted to tell you I'm sorry it was a bad experience when you met rachel ray. I met her at a book signing in Nashville a couple years ago and she was very nice. I'm sorry your experience was bad but I agree you maybe caught her on a bad day. Hopefully you will get the chance to meet her again and she will redeem herself.


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