Category Archives: Asparagus

Asparagus and Ham Casserole

Because of the delicate flavors in this dish, we preferred using a mild baked ham to a smoked one. 

1  (1-ounce) slice white bread
3 3/4  cups uncooked extra-broad egg noodles
2 1/2  cups (1 1/2-inch) sliced asparagus
1/4  cup all-purpose flour
1/2  teaspoon dried thyme
1/4  teaspoon salt
1/8  teaspoon black pepper
1  cup whole milk
1  cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1  tablespoon butter
3/4  cup finely chopped onion
1  tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 1/2  cups (1/2-inch) cubed ham (about 8 ounces)
1/4  cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2  tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 450°.

Place bread in a food processor, and pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs form to measure 1/2 cup.

Cook pasta in boiling water 7 minutes, omitting salt and fat. Add asparagus; cook 1 minute. Drain.

Lightly spoon the flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. Place flour, thyme, salt, and pepper in medium bowl; gradually add milk and broth, stirring with a whisk until well-blended. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion; saute 4 minutes. Add milk mixture; cook until thick (about 4 minutes), stirring constantly. Remove from heat, and stir in juice. Combine the pasta mixture, milk mixture, ham, and parsley in large bowl; spoon into a 2-quart casserole. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and cheese.

Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until filling is bubbly and topping is golden.

*Could be made ahead and frozen.  Thaw in refrigerator then bake until bubbly and topping is golden.

6 servings (serving size: 1 cup)