Skillet Turkey Ham, Mac & Cheese Casserole

By Food and Beverage Manager Donnell Jones-Craven


4 oz margarine

4 oz all-purpose flour

2 lbs cavatappi pasta

1-1/4 lbs TURKEY HAM, medium dice

1 qt half and half cream

1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

2 medium onions Papery onion skin/hull from

2-1/2 lbs mild or sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded (DIVIDED: reserve 1 c for topping each casserole)

1/2 lb Parmesan cheese, shredded (DIVIDED: reserve 1/2 c for topping each casserole)

2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

2 tbsp hot sauce

2 tsp white pepper

As needed paprika



Mix margarine and flour over medium heat, whisking until smooth for 6 to 8 minutes. Roux should be golden brown and have a nutty aroma. Be careful not to burn.

Remove from heat and set aside.

Assembly and Finish

Boil pasta in salted water until al dente (about 4 to 5 minutes). Drain and shock with cold water. Drain again and set aside.

Place turkey ham in a large, heavy pot and pour 1 cup of water over it. Simmer for 5 minutes. Remove turkey ham and set aside. Keep liquid in the pot, bringing it to a boil. Add cream, nutmeg and onion paper/hulls. Bring to boil and remove onion paper/hulls. Reduce heat and whisk in roux in small increments until sauce becomes thick.

Stir in 1-1/4 pounds Cheddar and 1 cup Parmesan, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce and white pepper. Blend well until all cheese is melted. Add reserved turkey ham plus cooked & drained pasta. Cook over medium heat until hot throughout. Taste for flavor and adjust seasonings, if necessary.

Spray two large black cast iron skillets with nonstick spray until well coated. Place a handful of the Cheddar (about 3 ounces) on the bottom of each skillet. For each casserole, add 1/4 of the turkey ham/pasta/cheese mixture and spread on top of cheese layer. Repeat layers again with 3 ounces Cheddar and the remaining turkey ham/pasta/cheese mixture.

Top each casserole with remaining cheeses. Lightly sprinkle paprika on top.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 15 to 20 minutes until hot and bubbly throughout. Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Portion and serve.