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Playing How to Make Mac 'n' Swiss with Ham, Peas and Deviled Breadcrumbs | Rachael Ray

For Rach's "Time Capsule" show (looking back at old trends that are coming back again), she updates one of everyone's favorite comfort foods, mac 'n' cheese. "We're going to do ham and Swiss, macaroni and peas and top it with deviled breadcrumbs," she says. It's easy, but feels a bit more special. Rather than baking the pasta after she tosses it with the cheesy sauce and ham, Rach simply pours it into a dish, tops it with the flavored breadcrumbs and serves it as is. "It just looks so perfect, why would I put that in the oven and dry it out?" she asks. "It's just a waste of time." Mic drop! 

For two more of Rach's popular mac 'n' cheese recipes, check out her Pumpkin Popper Mac and Mac 'n' Cheese with Dill, Chives + Mustard Breadcrumbs. 


For the Deviled Breadcrumbs:
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or chopped
  • 2 cups homemade coarse breadcrumbs 
  • 1 teaspoon EACH granulated onion, ground mustard and paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried dill
  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • Salt and pepper
For the Mac 'n' Swiss with Ham and Peas:
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 12 ounces to 1 pound ham steak, diced
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk, warmed in small pot over low heat
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 1 pound large shells, reginetti or other short-cut pasta
  • 1 cup fresh peas
  • One 12-ounce chunk of good Swiss, such as Jarlsberg, shredded
  • ½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon and/or fresh marjoram


Serves: 4


For the breadcrumbs, melt butter, add hot sauce and garlic and swirl. Add breadcrumbs and season with remaining ingredients, then toast until golden and remove from heat. 

For the mac, bring a large pot of water to boil for pasta. 

Rachael Ray 8-Quart Oval Covered Pasta Pot with Pour Spout

Rachael Ray 8-Quart Oval Covered Pasta Pot with Pour Spout

Rachael Ray

Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a medium nonstick skillet, brown diced ham and remove. Add remaining butter and melt, then add flour and whisk in warm milk. Season sauce as it thickens with salt and white pepper. 

Drop pasta in salted boiling water and add peas after 5 minutes. 

Stir cheeses into sauce, drain pasta and peas and toss with sauce and ham. Top pasta with deviled breadcrumbs and fresh herbs.