Creamed ham and cabbage is a healthy, filling and tasty dish that is a family favorite. The meal is quite easy to make and it is a wonderful way to use cabbage. Since cabbage is a vegetable that is commonly sold at a low price, particularly in the summer, this is also an inexpensive meal to make.
This can be a stand-alone meal or it can be served with other foods, noting that creamed ham and cabbage tends to be bland, despite good flavor. Still, it tends to go a long way and is also a cabbage meal that people who don’t particularly like cabbage can still enjoy.
The health benefits of this meal should be stressed, too. Cabbage is high in Vitamin K and C, and it has antioxidant, as well as cholesterol lowering properties. It is also high in fiber, sulfur, calcium and potassium. This comes primarily from the cabbage, while the ham adds a lot of the flavor. It should be noted, however, that while fatty pork ham can increase the flavor, turkey ham may be healthier because of lower fat content.
The following is for a family of four, with moderate to good appetites. It can be adjusted easily and if there are leftovers, they can be easily frozen for later meals or even boil-in-a-bag meals.
1/2 pound of cooked ham, diced in 1/2 inch cubes
1 medium head of green cabbage, cored and diced into 1 inch cubes
2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter or margarine
Enough flour to make a thin white sauce (1/2-1 cup)
Salt and pepper
Add the diced cabbage to a pot, cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and cook until the cabbage is tender, stirring occasionally. This usually takes about a half hour. For a healthier meal, the cabbage can also be steamed or sautéed until it is tender, rather than being boiled.
Drain out enough water so only about a cup of water remains and then add the milk, stirring the mixture. Return to heat and add the butter and ham, stirring. Simmer until the butter is melted. This usually takes just a couple of minutes.
Add the flour and mix well. As a tip, the flour can be put in a jar that has a lid, with cold water or milk added. The jar can then be capped and shaken well, prior to adding it to the cabbage mixture. This can help prevent the flour from clumping up.
Salt and pepper to taste. Cabbage can absorb a lot of salt, so this is worth being aware of. Stir the mixture and serve it hot.
The amount of liquid can be lowered if a thicker result is desired. It can also be thinned by adding additional milk.
If used as a main course, this food goes well with sliced tomatoes on the side. Cooking it as a side dish, it is great when served with spicy foods such as stuffed jalapenos, since cabbage tends to be a little bland.
Creamed ham and cabbage is not only great tasting, it is healthy. It can also be a great dish to have a day or two after having a baked ham dinner, if that meal produced leftovers. This is a meal that furnishes both good flavor and healthy aspects, while normally not being very expensive.