Here’s a fun little phone conversation my husband and I had the other night…
Let me set the scene. Carl’s out of town overnight, I’m home cutting 40+ lbs of onions for a school fundraiser. I’m sweaty, smelly, wearing a hairnet, and bawling my eyes out (because of the onions, y’know).
Carl: “Hello? How’s it going?”
Me: *sniff* “Bad.” *sniff*
Let me back up a minute. Carl has no idea I’m cutting onions. He thinks I’m cutting broccoli because they asked me to cut leeks but I had never cut a leek before and didn’t want my first time to entail 40 lbs. This was the conversation he’d already had to listen to:
Volunteer coordinator: You’ve never cut a leek? (in whisper to lady in the background – “She’s never cut a leek!” Other lady: “What do you mean, she’s never cut a leek?!”)
Me: “Yeah, I have a food blog and I’ve never cut a leek. Can’t say I know my way around a mushroom real well either, whatzittoya?”
No, no, I didn’t say that. I just asked for something else and was reluctantly assigned broccoli.
SO. This morning I got my broccoli, and a bag of onions to drop off at a friend’s house along the way. She answered the door with pink eye. You don’t give a bag of onions to a poor gal who already has a burning eye. Especially when you think you yourself are immune to onion tears, having never shed one except that one time you were wearing glasses instead of the miraculous eye-sealing protective contacts you usually wear.
Except when you cut 100 and some onions, there is not a person on this planet who would be immune to tears.
So yes, Carl called. I answered, onion crying, and explained my horrible situation of burning eyes and having to leave the kitchen for fresh air every 2 minutes.
He tried valiantly to help.
Carl: “You should wear some goggles.”
Me: YES, that’s brilliant! Where are they?
Carl: “Oh. Hehem. In the duffel bag I took along with me.”
Me: “Wonderful. This sucks.” (I get sulky quickly, partly because I know if he was home we could take alternating 2 minute shifts and this would be over in no time because he can chop veggies like nobody’s business).
Carl: “There must be some other way. What if you put a plastic bag over your face and an elastic band around your neck to hold it in place?”
Me: “Well, I was hoping to survive this experience.”
I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.
I thought he was trying to help, but now it’s hard to say. I may sleep with a wary eye open for a few days.
What does this all have to do with my boat full of broccoli and ham? Well, not much really. And now you know I don’t really know my way around a kitchen, if cutting leeks is any indication. But there are onions in this, so…yeah.
This is one I just had to share, sub-par pictures and all, in case any of y’all (I’m so Southern) are thinking about meal planning and looking for an easy addition that will totally wake up your dinner audience. If you’re feeling ambitious, you could certainly skip the crescent roll dough and make bread dough or pizza dough and fill it with this – I bet that would actually be even better!
For me, Carl often has meetings in his office that run till about 4:30 pm. His office is open to the rest of the house so meetings mean we have to vacate the premises for the duration of the meeting, which is usually a handy time to go grocery shopping if you don’t mind the after-school crowd. This idea came to me on one of those late-day grocery trips, when I knew I was going to have to have dinner on the table about half an hour after I stepped through the door. So, I planned a super simple filling I knew I could throw together in 5-1o minutes, I grabbed a can of crescent roll dough, and this is the result.
Initially in my mind this was going to be a braid (such a pretty word! such a pretty thing!), until I realized how much more crescent roll dough that would involve, and given that I had only one can of the wacky and wonderful stuff, I had to think of something. This longboat-style creation is the result, and we loved it. We loved it enough that I took pictures in the dark so I could tell you about it.
I expected to love it enough that I even took a picture before I baked it (also because I thought my hungry family might revolt if I took pictures after it was baked…turns out, when things are this good, they tell me to take a picture! You can’t buy support like that.)
Then we had it again in the light, and I took more pictures. I have a problem, yes?
I must warn you that this does not make for great leftovers unless you’re reheating it in the oven. The key to the crust is the light, flaky crispness Pillsbury crescent rolls are known for, and microwaved the next day there is none of that crispiness to be had. If you went the bread or pizza dough crust route, it might be a different leftover story.
This would be equally good with chicken, but was a perfect way to use up leftover ham! You probably use a lot of these ingredients together all the time, if your family’s anything like mine. This was just a fun new way to present it and get a few oohs and aahs when you present it at the table. I do love a good ooh and aah.
- 1-2 cups diced, cooked ham
- 1 cup fresh broccoli, chopped and blanched in boiling water for 3-4 minutes and thoroughly drained
- 4-5 sliced mushrooms (optional)
- ½ cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ¼ cup diced red onion
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ cup bread crumbs (I used Panko)
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 roll refrigerated crescent dough, such as Pillsbury
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- In large bowl, toss together ham, broccoli, mushrooms, pepper, garlic, cheddar cheese, mayo. onion, and salt.
- In a separate small bowl, mix bread crumbs with Parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning.
- Unroll crescent roll dough on large cookie sheet, stretching slightly (some cracks are fine along the perforations). Dump ham mixture down centre of dough and pull up sides and ends of dough an inch or two to enclose it a bit. We aren't looking for perfection here, we just want the filling to stay in. Cover the centre with the bread crumb mixture.
- Bake for 25 minutes, or until heated through and dough is puffed and golden brown.