3-Cheese Baked Ham & Tortellini with #HormelFamily

Monday, December 16, 2013

This Holiday Season, we are finding ourselves at home ~ without having to travel, and without anyone traveling to us.
This has never happened before...and part of me is very excited about this, and part of me is a bit on the sad side about it.

Christmas is my FAVORITE holiday, and I love love love this celebration.
Growing up, Christmas was Tradition and Chaos and Food and Fun.

As we grow up and grow older, things change, and that's ok.

Change makes way for new beginnings, new traditions.
Change gives us an opportunity to let go of some of the old, and welcome new.
That's exciting to me...

But the most important thing that I'm struggling with is how to make this holiday season FEEL like something special. I need to make sure it's not just another day...just the four of us.
Our daughter is pretty bummed out about being with JUST her family this year, so how do I make it special for her?
I'll do my best, that much I know!

While I can, (and still might) make a smallish turkey and all the Christmas trimmings...

I'm also looking at other fun not-something-we-get-to-enjoy-everyday meals.

3-Cheese Baked Ham & Tortellini

Savor the sweet taste of HORMEL® CURE 81® ham and creamy cheese together in this delectable pasta.
1 ½ teaspoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 ½ cups milk
¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
¼ cup shredded Swiss cheese
1 cup finely chopped HORMEL® CURE 81® Sliced Ham
¼ teaspoon white pepper
4 cups cheese-filled tortellini, cooked and drained

1. In small saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes or until tender. Stir in flour. Cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes longer.
2. Gradually stir milk into saucepan. Simmer, stirring frequently, 10 to 15 minutes or until thickened. Add cheeses. Cook, stirring constantly, 5 to 7 minutes longer or until melted. Stir in ham and white pepper.
3. Heat broiler.
4. Spoon tortellini into 4 small gratin dishes. Spoon sauce over tortellini. Broil 4 inches from heat source 3 to 5 minutes or until topping is slightly golden. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

Waking up on Christmas morning to something delish smelling?
Monkey Bread...Sure, that's easy...and with...
Maple AND Bacon?

cooking spray
1 (12 ounce) package HORMEL® BLACK LABEL® bacon
½ cup margarine
¾ cup packed dark brown sugar
½ cup maple syrup
¾ cup white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 (16.3 ounce) packages refrigerated biscuit dough, separated and cut into quarters

1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat the inside of a 9-inch fluted tube pan (such as Bundt) with cooking spray.
2. Place bacon in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the bacon slices on paper towels; remove extra fat and crumble into small pieces.
3. Melt margarine in a small saucepan over medium heat; stir in brown sugar and maple syrup. Bring mixture to a boil; cook and stir until mixture begins to foam, about 1 minute. Remove saucepan from heat.
4. Mix white sugar and cinnamon in a resealable plastic bag; add 6 to 8 biscuit pieces at a time and shake until well coated. Pour any remaining sugar-cinnamon mixture into brown sugar mixture. Place saucepan over medium heat, cooking and stirring until sugar dissolves, 2 to 3 minutes.
5. Sprinkle ¼ the bacon pieces in the bottom of the tube pan; pour in about ¼ the brown sugar mixture. Arrange 1 layer of biscuit pieces in the tube pan; sprinkle in ¼ the bacon pieces. Drizzle about ¼ the brown sugar mixture over the biscuit pieces. Continue layering until all the ingredients are used, ending with a drizzle of brown sugar mixture.
6. Bake in the preheated oven until biscuits are cooked through, about 35 minutes. Allow to cool in pan, 10 to 20 minutes; invert onto a serving plate.

I think these two recipes will be sure fire hits at my house...
Do you prepare any non-traditional menu items at your house?

Do you have any ideas for me to make this 'not just another day' at our house, just the four of us?


*** As a Hormel Foods Extended Family Blogger, I am occasionally sent Hormel Products or coupons to off set the cost of purchasing products to facilitate reviews. ***


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