Monday, February 20, 2012

Baked Pasta with Eggs, Ham and Cheese

This is my take on traditional Schinkenfleckerln that is so popular in Bohemia (Czech Republic) and Austria. In original Schinkenfleckerln, pasta being used are short and flat flakes, sort of like broken wide noodles, or Fleckern. I used spaghettini instead because I had leftovers from my Salmon and Pasta dish that I cooked previous day. Also, instead of traditional baking pan or casserole I used large 8oz. non-stick muffin pan. The reason for this change was that it gave me 4 times more surface area that had a nice crunch, the best part of this meal, as far as I am concerned. My brother and I were always fighting for the corner portions because they were the crunchiest, we have shunned the middle, soft parts.
Another very easy meal to make, especially if you have leftover pasta on hand.

4 shallots or 1/2 medium onion
4 cups cooked pasta, room temperature
4 eggs
1 cup chopped ham
1/2 cup grated cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 °F and place rack on middle shelf.
Sauté the shallots in little bit of butter until soft, about 5 minutes and let cool.
Chop the cooked pasta into 1/2 inch pieces.
In a mixing bowl beat the eggs until whites and yolks are well combined, add pinch of salt and pepper, cooked shallots, ham, cheese and pasta and mix so that all the pasta pieces are well coated with eggs and all ingredients are well combined. Pour into buttered muffin cups or casserole, cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake in oven for 30 minutes. Remove aluminum foil and bake additional 15 minutes or until top is golden brown. Remove pasta from pan by turning it over on a baking sheet and serve with pickles or/and lettuce. It can be served as a light lunch at room temperature.

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