If you're tired of those same ways to finish off that leftover ham or turkey still sitting in your refrigerator, then I two delicious recipes to share that will help you solve your problem. This first recipe is a simple hearty casserole with a combination of seasonings that will elevate it into an elegant Cajun main dish.
The second recipe is geared toward getting rid of your ham and will transform those leftovers into a new oven casserole with kielbassa and beans that is so amazing with a lightly seasoned tomato sauce that you will not recognize it. After you make this, you will look forward to leftover ham and welcome the opportunity to have this dish again.
So don't get disgusted with those leftovers because you will be pleasantly surprised once you try these recipes for yourself.
My Cajun Surprise
1-1/2 cups of diced cooked ham
1 cup of chopped onion (1 large)
3/4 cup chopped celery
1 green pepper, cut into strips
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon of salt
1 can of tomato sauce (15 ounces)
3 cups of chopped cooked turkey or chicken
1/2 cup uncooked rice (regular variety)
2 tablespoons of minced parsley
2 tablespoons of canola or olive oil
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon of dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon of Worchestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
1 teaspoon of sugar
Brown your onion, celery, green pepper, and garlic in a large skillet in the oil until onion is golden brown and then stir in your ham. Add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Cover; simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally until the rice cooks and the flavors are well combined.
My Favorite French Oven Stew
4 cups of water
1 lb. of dried Great Northern or Navy Beans (2-1/2 cups)
4 carrots, sliced
2 medium onions, diced
2 cloves of garlic, fined diced
2 bay leaves
1 can of tomato sauce (15 ounce size)
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon of dry mustard
1/4 cup of flour
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
3 cups of leftover ham pieces, chopped
1 lb. (or less) kielbassa, cut into pieces
3 tablespoons of canola oil or olive oil
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
Heat water and beans (that you soaked overnight) to boiling in your Dutch oven or large pot; boil about two minutes. Remove from the heat; cover and let stand one hour. Add enough water to the cover beans if needed. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until almost tender about 1-1/2 hours. (Be sure not to boil or your beans will burst now). Drain.
Brown your onion and other chopped vegetables in the oil till golden brown and your chopped kielbassa pieces until the vegetables are tender. Take this off of the heat and stir in the flour to coat everything.
In a large Dutch oven or 4-quart casserole, place this cooked mixture and all the remaining ingredients together. Cover and cook at 325 degree oven for about an hour. Remove the cover and cook an additional 30 minutes more.