How to Make the Most Out of All that Leftover Ham
Leftover Easter ham can turn into a variety of menu items instead of the basic ham and cheese sandwich.
In many homes, ham is an Easter staple. Ham is top dog, it is the main event. But typically, there are leftovers and frugal people everywhere will be eating ham sandwiches for lunch for the next week.
My family looked at me as if I were nuts when, on Tuesday night, our Costco-purchased Easter ham came out of the oven for dinner. Because I write this column, I had to have ham leftovers before today. My understanding family sighed then dug right in. They love ham.
While we did have ham sandwiches on Wednesday, we also had ham in a myriad of other dishes. And just for the record, there is no ham for the Baratta family today—we are grilling filets for Easter dinner.
I purchased a spiral sliced ham from Costco, so removing the meat from the bone was easy. I immediately dropped the bone into a pot of water and made broth for Ham and Barley Soup. I diced the rest of the ham (saving some sandwich slices for lunch) and tossed it into the fridge.
When using the leftover ham, get creative or use some of the ideas listed below. Ham can be added to many different things. One of my favorite recipes uses leftover ham AND leftover hard boiled eggs. The Spicy Deviled Eggs recipe was adapted from a Penzey’s Spice catalog recipe I found years ago.
Ham has so much flavor and also lots of saltiness. If you are making soup from the ham broth, be certain to taste it and add water if you find it too salty. For the Cheesy Bread, I use a refrigerated pizza crust from a tube or thawed pre-made pizza dough from Valenti Meat Market in St. Peters or C. Rallo Meats in O’Fallon.
Other things to do with the leftover ham:
- Roll 1 tablespoon each of diced ham and your favorite cheese into crescent roll dough before baking
- Top a cheese pizza with diced ham and canned pineapple before baking
- Add diced ham to your favorite egg salad recipe
- Top baked potatoes with diced ham
Spicy Deviled Eggs
- 6 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and sliced in half length-wise
- 2 tablespoons spicy mustard
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- ¼ cup finely minced ham
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon ground chipotle powder (more or less to taste)
- Additional ground chipotle powder for garnish
Remove yolks from the egg halves and place in a medium bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until smooth. Fill the egg white halves with the yolk mixture. Arrange on a platter and sprinkle with additional chipotle powder.
Ham and Barley Soup
- Serves 6
- 8 cups ham broth (or chicken broth)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and diced
- 3 ribs celery, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 to 8 ounces diced ham (more or less to taste)
- 1 cup pearled barley
- 1-15 ounce can evaporated skim milk (or 2 cups milk)
In a large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat for about a minute. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic. Sauté the vegetables until they are soft and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Add the diced ham and sauté an additional two minutes.
Add the broth and barley to the pot. Cover and simmer for 50 minutes, adding water if necessary to continue cooking the barley.
Once the barley is soft, stir in the milk and reduce the heat to low. Cook an additional 3 minutes to heat the milk. Serve with grated parmesan cheese and plenty of cracked black pepper.
Cheesy Bread with Ham
- 10 servings
- 1 tube thin pizza crust (found in the refrigerator section of Dierbergs) or pre-made pizza dough
- 8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
- 8 ounces diced ham
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
Preheat the oven to 475. Spray a large baking sheet with non-stick spray or line it with parchment paper.
Roll out the crust to a rectangle about 18”x11”.
Sprinkle the cheese, ham and onion powder over the entire crust. Gently press the mixture into the dough so that it sticks somewhat.
Fold one third of the dough over (a loose jelly roll style), then fold the other third over that. At this point, you will have a long roll with three layers of dough and two layers of filling.
Lay the roll onto the baking sheet. Brush the bread with olive oil.
Bake for 10 minutes until golden. Cool slightly before cutting.