Green Threads and Ham


So how did your ham-in-a-crockpot fare? I've decided six hours was too long for ours, even on Low, but at least it didn't dry out. And we had plenty left over for several more nights of meals. In a past post I suggested for your leftover ham the very tasty Ham and Sweet Potato Hash (which is on the menu for tonight), but this year I'd like to add a new favorite. photo (2)

This recipe makes a lot. Like 8+ servings, so feel free to 1/2 or 3/4 it. Because it's not a classic Alfredo, it reheats nicely, without the sauce separating, even in the microwave.

Pasta Alfredo with Leftover Ham and Peas

1 Tbsp olive oil

3 Tbsp butter, divided

1/2 onion, chopped small

3 Tbsp flour

2 cups half-and-half

1/8 tsp salt

10 ozs pkg frozen peas, thawed (I actually don't use the whole pack)

1/4 to 1/2 lb leftover ham, chopped

3/4 c parmesan cheese

1 lb pasta, cooked (I used macaroni and leftover spaghetti noodles)

Fry onions in oil and 1 Tbsp butter until softened and lightly browned. Toward the end, throw in the ham. Remove.

Melt remaining 2 Tbsp butter in same pan over low heat. Add flour, stirring constantly for two minutes. Slowly whisk in milk and add salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, 15-20 minutes until thickened. Remove from heat and add onion-ham mixture, cooked pasta, peas, and most of cheese. Toss thoroughly and serve.

So much for the "ham" portion of this post. Now, to entirely switch gears, if you've been doing a little spring purging around the house, you might have clothes and linens you want to discard. Now, we all know that clothing in good condition can be donated to the usual suspects, but what about the stained stuff? The hole-y socks and underwear? The threadbare threads?photo (3)

It turns out that, in King County, we can also recycle unusable clothing and textiles. Threadcycle that vest with a broken zipper (to name one example in my closet)! Threadcycle those beach towels with unraveling corners (to name another)! As long as the items aren't wet or mildewy or soaked in flammable, hazardous material, they can be recycled into insulation or "industrial wiping rags" or even pet beds.

Bellevue Utilities News provides the all-important details:

To threadcycle, it’s just two simple steps for Bellevue residents:

  1. Call Republic Services, the provider of garbage and recycling services in Bellevue, at 425-452-4762 to arrange for a pickup day.
  2. Put the clean, dry clothing and household textiles in a clear plastic bag and place next to or on top of their recycling container on the arranged pickup day.

Of course, if you already have garbage and recycling services at your home, step #1 is not necessary. They'll just pick the stuff up on your normal recycling day. (The recycling brochure put out by the city ONLY lists step #2.)

So celebrate spring with a clean fridge and clean closet--enjoy some green threads and ham.