Friday, March 22, 2013

Magazine Challenge: Ham and Potato Bake

I don't know why I'm trying again with something that is described in the notes as a "crustless quiche".  I think I proved in December/January that I'm not really a good judge of all things baked with egg as a filling.  Yet when I decided to have people in for dinner and served ham, I saw this in the March 2005 EDF and knew it would be a good way to use up the leftovers. 
J and I eat a lot of broccoli.  It's one of the few vegetables we agree on.  We've taken to buying large bags of it frozen at Costco.  The fact that this contains simple ingredients that I had on hand made it even easier to make.  Easy and pantry staples.  It was worth a shot, even if I can't judge how long it takes to get eggs to set in the oven. 
I present to you now The Ham and Potato Bake from Everyday Food March, 2005:

6 eggs
1-1/4 c milk
salt and pepper for seasoning
1-1/4 lb potatoes, peeled
10 oz thinly sliced leftover ham
10 oz frozen broccoli, thawed and squeezed dry
1/2 c grated cheddar cheese

1.  Grease a deep dish pie pan and preheat the oven to 350F.
2.  In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and milk.  Season with 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp ground black pepper.  Thinly slice the potatoes and drop into the egg mixture.
3.  Arrange half the potatoes on the bottom of the pie pan, covering the bottom completely.  Layer the ham, broccoli and cheese before covering  with the remaining potato slices.  Pour the egg mixture over the layers, pressing the potatoes down into the egg mixture.
4.  Cover the pie pan with foil, and bake 1 hour until the potatoes are tender.  Remove foil and continue to bake for 40 minutes, until golden and set.  Let cool 15 to 20 minutes to set fully before serving in wedges.
Serves 6
 Adapted from Everyday Food, March 2005
 The amount of pepper in this gave it a good kick.  I also adapted the recipe somewhat.  The original called for heavy cream.  I used milk, and reduced it by a 1/2 cup.  There was still lots of liquid for the potatoes.
Here's everything being layered in the pan.  I would like to try gruyere next time.  Or an even sharper cheddar...or maybe a little more.  But a 1/2 c was enough cheese in the finished dish.
Ready for the oven!  I pressed the potatoes down, but the ones at the very top were not submerged in the liquid.  I decided that it probably wouldn't matter, seeing as for the first hour they would be covered with foil.
Here it is coming out of the oven.  The edges puffed, and it smelled amazing.  I like the stoneware because 15 minutes sitting out really didn't do a thing to the temperature.  The potatoes that were out of the egg mixture?  They were really crispy on top.
It also stayed together well when sliced.  I didn't even have trouble getting the first piece out of the pan, which is saying something.  Three of us ate more than half of it for dinner.  The original recipe called for the whole thing being tipped out of the pan and then righted on a plate for serving.  I was just as happy to leave it in the pan and serving.  But the flavour was nice.  You could reduce the salt even more than I did from the original.
I told J that this would be great for brunch.  And it would.  With really large mimosas. 

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