Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ham and egg cake

I have a wacky idea for something to do with ham and eggs. I think it will go something like this: get a ham slice from market; grind it using the fine blade; lightly beat some egg; mix the egg and ham together, adding, perhaps, a bit of flour as a binder. Pipe the mixture into simmering broth or perhaps into hot oil. Will it hold together?

Next generation of this idea: put the mixture into well-greased muffing tin, first lining the cups with baby spinach; should come out like a quiche; the jury’s still out (in my mind) about the flour idea.

Third generation: bingo, I’ve got it! Looked in the cupboard and, sure enough, there was a box of Bisquick in there…been there for probably a couple of years. AND, on the back of the box was a recipe for an Italian “bake” which included ground beef, frozen peas, and some grated cheese. Now we’re talkin’.

I still want to try my idea in paragraph 1 above, but that will keep until another day.

Bear in mind that this recipe uses exactly what I already had on hand. The only thing I didn’t alter was the wet-dry proportions for the Bisquick itself.

Ham and egg cake
1 ham steak, about 1 lb.
1 cup frozen bell pepper strips, thawed and chopped
1 scallion, green and white, chopped
black pepper
3/4 tsp dried tarragon
2 cups Bisquick
2 eggs
1 cup milk (I used 2% along with a bit of half and half)
1 cup baby spinach leaves
1 cup grated cheese (in our case some goat mozzarella and some romano)
1 tbsp butter

Preheat the oven to 400°.

Trim the ham of all gristle, most of the fat, and the bone that’s probably in it. Grind it fine, or chop with some pulses of a food processor.

Spray a medium sized casserole dish with cooking spray. Spread the spinach leaves over the bottoms and sides of the dish.

Add the ham, peppers, pepper, scallion, and tarragon. Salt isn’t necessary because the ham is salty, as is the romano.

Mix together the Bisquick, milk and eggs. Pour over the ham mixture. Dot with little pieces of the butter. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Top with the cheese and return to the oven for 4-5 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

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