I have made some wonderful friends in the time I have spent in Parsons. The people in this town are down to earth and believe in helping each other out. I have seen hands reaching out for help and hands extended to help. I think this is one of the friendliest areas to live and work. Momma Said, “You have to be a friend to have a friend.”
I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter celebration with friends or family. To celebrate the resurrection of Christ our Savior, to enjoy good food and most of all enjoy the love of family. I miss our family dinners, which usually included some kind of drama. It was never a family get together with us that something didn’t go wrong. But I still love each and every one of them. Momma Said, “Life is what you make of it, so go with the flow.”
As life rolls on, I keep my memories close at hand and visit them often. Sometimes I catch myself “dozing” with my eyes open. I remember so many things, but, have forgotten so much too. Some memories are as bright as the sun while some have faded around the edges. Momma Said, “I may not have much money, but I have a wealth of memories.”
Plowing season is upon us, so get out there and get your hands dirty. Plant a seed and watch it grow, the fruits of your labor will be great. If you are lucky enough to have leftover ham this recipe will help you use up some of that.
HAM, CHEESE & SPINACH PUFFS
2 sheets puff pastry
For the bechamel sauce
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup warm milk
1 pinch of salt
Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
Ground nutmeg (optional)
1/2 lb cooked ham, diced
2 cups fresh spinach, rinsed and chopped
1 cup Swiss cheese, grated
1. Cut the puff pastry sheets into 5-inch squares. Set aside in the refrigerator. Pre-heat your oven to 400°F
2. For the bechamel sauce: Melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Add flour and salt; cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture becomes pale golden with a slightly nutty aroma.
3. Pour warm milk in 2 steps, stirring constantly with wooden spoon and whisk until smooth. Cook the mixture, stirring constantly along the bottom of the saucepan, until boiling, about 7 minutes.
4. Reduce heat to low. Simmer gently until sauce thickens, about 10 minutes. If you still have lumps, use your immersion blender!
5. Stir in spinach and cook for 1 minute. Add ham and cheese and stir well. Set aside.
6. Arrange the puff pastry squares on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Dollop 1 or 2 tablespoons of the bechamel mixture, top with grated cheese and close the pockets by folding the corners on top.
7. Make an egg wash using an egg and 1 teaspoon of cold water. Brush the puff pastry and bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until puffed and golden. Serve immediately with a crisp salad.