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Creamy Penne with Smoked Ham and Peas*

* 8 oz penne pasta
* 2 Tbsp butter
* 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
* 1 cup milk
* 2 cups shredded mozzarella
* 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
* 1/8 tsp salt
* 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
* 1 cup frozen peas, thawed and drained
* 1 cup diced smoked ham

# Prepare pasta according to package directions; drain.
# Heat butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir until blended; cook about 3 minutes, just until mixture starts to turn golden.
# Whisk in milk. Simmer, stirring often, until thickened, about 7 minutes. Add mozzarella, nutmeg, salt and pepper; let cheese melt and whisk together. Add peas, ham and penne; toss to coat and cook to heat through. Serve with freshly ground black pepper to taste.

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Header photo by
Gillian Gunson