baked pumpkin & ham mac and cheese

Most of us had Turkey for Thanksgiving dinner, but I know some of you had ham, right?

And I’m guessing at least a few of you have half a can of pumpkin sitting in your fridge leftover from all that baking?  (I used 3/4 cup for this recipe.  If you have a little less, just substitute a little more milk or even better… some sour cream!)

I was playing a little ‘throw this all together and hope it tastes ok’ game with this meal, and I’m pretty sure I won!

I absolutely loved this combination of pumpkin, cheese, spices and noodles.  Add a little cayenne if you like a kick, and some fresh sage if you’ve got it!

Wanna know the best part about this meal (besides the use of leftovers)?  Your kids would probably not even notice the pumpkin hiding in all that cheese if you didn’t tell them…  a perfect sneaky-veggies meal!

What’s your favorite dish for holiday leftovers?

baked pumpkin & ham mac and cheese

Ingredients

  • 1/2-3/4 pound short noodles, cooked al dente*
  • 2 cups diced leftover ham
  • 3 cups shredded cheddar jack blend cheese, divided
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups half & half or milk
  • 1 cup freshly grated parmesan

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Cook the noodles according to package directions (1 minute or so less, if you don't like your noodles too soft.)

(*I usually boil the whole pound, and then give a bowl of buttered noodles to my toddlers to snack on while I work!)

Butter a 9×13″ baking dish. Stir together the cooked noodles, the shredded cheddar blend and the diced ham and place in the buttered baking dish.

Stir together the rest of the ingredients in a bowl, except for the parmesan. Pour this sauce evenly over the noodles in the dish.

Sprinkle the parmesan evenly over the top. (At this point you can combine some butter and bread crumbs and sprinkle those over the top as well, if you like!)

Bake for 45 minutes, or until the top is golden and the sauce is bubbling (cover with a piece of foil if it is getting too brown towards the end of the cooking time!).

http://sweetannas.com/2012/11/baked-pumpkin-ham-mac-and-cheese.html

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