Baked Ham, Deviled Eggs and Dessert

Try these crowd-pleasing updates to classic family favorites.

By Scott Jones | Photos By Jason Wallis

WEB EXCLUSIVE: Strawberry Cheesecake

Strawberry Cheesecake

Strawberry Cheesecake

2 cups sliced almonds
1½ cups sugar, divided
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
3 Tbsp. butter, melted
4 Tbsp. all-purpose flour, divided
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese softened
½ tsp. salt
4 large eggs
1 (8-ounce) container sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. orange zest
1½ cups chopped fresh strawberries
1 cup whipping cream
2 tsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. sour cream
Garnish: fresh sliced strawberries, orange rind curls, mint sprigs

Preheat oven to 350˚ F. Place almonds in a single layer in a shallow pan. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant, stirring after 5 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes or until completely cool.

Pulse almonds in a food processor 5 to 6 times or until finely ground. Combine ground almonds, 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, 3 Tbsp. butter and 1 Tbsp. flour in a small bowl. Press mixture onto bottom and 1½ inches up sides of a lightly greased 9-inch spring form pan.

Bake crust at 350˚ F for 8 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack. Reduce heat to 325˚ F.

Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Combine remaining 1 1/4 cups sugar and 3 Tbsp. flour and ½ tsp. salt. Add to cream cheese, beating until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1 (8-ounce) container sour cream, vanilla and orange zest, beating just until blended. Gently stir in strawberries. Pour batter into pan with prepared crust. Place on a baking sheet.

Bake at 325˚ F for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes or until almost set. Turn off oven. Let cheesecake stand in oven, with door partially open, 15 minutes.

Remove cheesecake from oven; gently run a knife around edges of cheesecake to loosen. Cool in pan on a wire rack 30 minutes or until completely cool. Cover and chill 8 hours. Remove sides of pan.

Beat whipping cream at high speed until foamy; gradually add 2 tsp. sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in 2 Tbsp. sour cream. Spread over cheesecake, and garnish, if desired.

Prep: 30 min. Bake: 1 hr., 30 min. Cool: 45 min. Chill 8 hr. Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Brown-Sugar-and-Mustard Baked Ham

Brown-Sugar-and-Mustard Baked Ham

Brown-Sugar-and-Mustard Baked Ham

1 (16-oz.) package light brown sugar
1 cup spicy brown mustard
1 cup orange juice
1/2 cup soft drink
(I prefer Dr. Pepper, but could use Coke, Pepsi, Sprite or 7-Up)
2 Tbsp. red pepper jelly
1 (8- to 10-lb.) fully cooked, bone-in ham
48 whole cloves
1 cup low-sodium, fat-free chicken broth

Combine brown sugar and next 4 ingredients in a small saucepan; cook over medium heat, stirring often, until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat.

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Remove skin from ham, and trim fat to 1/4-inch thickness. Make shallow cuts in fat in a diamond pattern. Push cloves into ham in a decorative pattern; place ham in a 13- x 9-inch pan. Pour brown sugar mixture evenly over ham. Add chicken broth to pan.

Bake on lower oven rack at 350˚F for 2 hours and 30 minutes, or until meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 140˚F. Baste with pan juices every 15 to 20 minutes, adding additional chicken broth as needed to keep drippings from burning.

Remove from oven, and let cool. Cover and store in refrigerator for up to five days.

Prep: 15 min. Bake: 2 hr., 30 min. Cool: 20 min. Yield: 12 servings

Bacon-and-Chive Deviled Eggs

Bacon-and-Chive Deviled Eggs

Bacon-and-Chive Deviled Eggs

8 bacon slices
1 dozen large eggs
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 cup instant potato flakes
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives

Cook bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon and drain on paper towel; crumble and reserve.

Meanwhile, place eggs in a single layer in a stainless steel stockpot. (Do not use nonstick.) Add water to depth of 3 inches. Bring to a rolling boil; cover, remove from heat; let stand 15 minutes.

Drain immediately, and return eggs to stockpot. Fill stockpot with cold water and ice; let stand 5 minutes. Tap each egg firmly on the counter until cracks form all over the shell. Peel under cold water.

Cut eggs in half lengthwise. Remove yolks. Process egg yolks, mayonnaise and next five ingredients in a food processer until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Stir in reserved bacon and chives. Spoon or pipe filling into egg white halves. Cover and chill up to 8 hours.

Prep: 30 min. Stand: 5 min. Chill: 8 hr. Yield: 8 servings