Okay, so you're tired of cooking after your big Easter extravaganza, you're also sick of munching on ham, but you've got a little bit left and feeling guilty about throwing it away. This is the perfect dish to use up that last bit of ham, change up the flavors a bit and get you out of the kitchen in about half an hour! I found beautiful fresh English peas at the market and enlisted my 4 year-old to help me shuck them (his preschool teacher says we really need to work on his fine motor skills and quite honestly he's sick and tired of me dumping out a jar of teeny tiny corn kernels and then asking HIM to please put them back in the jar). I was also hoping that perhaps if he helped me make dinner that I might actually get him to eat some peas! Stay tuned ...
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 1 - 1 1/2 cups ham chunks
- 3/4 cup fresh English peas, or frozen if you want to make it quick and don't have a 4 year-old needing to improve his/her fine motor skills
- 3 1/2-4 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or onion powder (optional)
- 1/2 cup parmesan or pecorino romano cheese
- salt & pepper, to taste
In a skillet over medium-high heat, cook ham pieces stirring occasionally 4-5 minutes until ham starts to texture and brown and is heated through. Remove from heat and set aside. In a small saucepan, bring to boil 1/3 cup water, add peas, cover and cook 4 minutes; drain and set aside. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add butter and arborio rice, stirring constantly for about 3 minutes until rice begins to turn translucent. If desired, add onion or garlic powder. Add one cup of the chicken broth, stirring until almost completely absorbed. Repeat the previous step adding one cup of broth at a time. I only needed 3 1/2 cups of broth, but if your rice seems like it needs more, add the additional half cup.
Once rice is tender, mix the ham, peas and cheese together. If desired, top with additional cheese, salt and pepper to taste and serve hot. Serves 3-4 depending on how much ham you have to get rid of!