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Weeknight Wagon Wheel Pasta

This is an awesome quick weeknight meal.

Ingredients:

1 TBSP EVOO
1 small onion, chopped
8 oz Italian sausage
3 cloves garlic, diced
2 tsp flour
20 oz Chicken broth
2 cups water
8 oz Wagon Wheel pasta
5 oz Baby spinach
2 oz Parmesan cheese, shredded fine

Italian seasoning, as desired

Directions:

  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat (6.5 on our stove)
  • Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes
  • Stir in sausage and cook until broken up and no longer pink, about 4 minutes
  • Stir in garlic, cook 30-60 seconds
  • Stir in flour, cook for 1 minute
  • Stir in broth, water, and pasta. Increase heat to medium- high (7.5).
  • Bring to a vigorous simmer, and stir often until pasta is tender and sauce is thickened, 15-18 minutes.
  • Stir in spinach a handful at a time until wilted.
  • Remove from heat and stir in parmesan.
  • Top with extra parmesan.
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Bolognese

Ingredients

  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 8 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
  • 1 onion , chopped coarse
  • Minced garlic (to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 large carrot , peeled and chopped coarse
  • 1 celery rib , chopped coarse
  • 4 ounces pancetta , chopped fine
  • 4 ounces mortadella , chopped
  • 6 ounces chicken livers , trimmed
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2.25-2.5 lbs ground meatloaf mix (beef, pork, veal)
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh sage
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 pound pasta
  • Parmesan cheese , grated, for serving

Method

  1. Combine chicken broth and beef broth in bowl; sprinkle gelatin over top and set aside.
  2. Pulse onion, carrot, and celery in food processor until finely chopped, about 10 pulses, scraping down bowl as needed; transfer to separate bowl.
  3. Chop pancetta and mortadella on cutting board into dime-sized pieces. Pulse in now-empty food processor until finely chopped, about 25 pulses, scraping down bowl as needed; transfer to second bowl.
  4. Process chicken livers in now-empty food processor until pureed, about 5 seconds; transfer to third bowl.
  5. Heat oil in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add beef, veal, and pork; cook, breaking up pieces with spoon, until all liquid has evaporated and meat begins to sizzle, 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Add chopped pancetta mixture and sage; cook, stirring frequently, until pancetta is translucent, 5 to 7 minutes, adjusting heat to keep fond from burning.
  7. Add chopped vegetables, garlic, and crushed red pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes.
  8. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until rust-colored and fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  9. Stir in wine, scraping pan with wooden spoon to loosen fond. Simmer until sauce has thickened, about 5 minutes.
  10. Stir in broth mixture and return to simmer. Reduce heat to low and cook at bare simmer until thickened (wooden spoon should leave trail when dragged through sauce), about 1½ hours.
  11. Stir in pureed chicken livers, bring to boil, and remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste; cover and keep warm.
  12. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot. Add pasta and 1 tablespoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Reserve ¾ cup cooking water, then drain pasta and return it to pot. Add half of sauce and cooking water to pasta and toss to combine. Transfer to serving bowl and serve, passing cheese separately.

Alfredo sauce

Here is a pretty easy but very yummy Alfredo sauce.  I got the recipe from here.

Use this with the previous post!!

If serving with one pound of fettuccine, halve the recipe.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup (1 stick) Unsalted Butter
8 oz package Cream Cheese
1 tsp Garlic powder
1/8 tsp black pepper
2 cups Whole milk
6 oz (1.5 cups) Parmesan, shredded

Directions:

  • In a large sauce pan over medium-high head (7-8), melt the butter.
  • Add in the Cream Cheese. Whisk while melting completely. It will not combine fully with the butter.
  • Add the Garlic and Pepper.
  • Slowly whisk in the Whole Milk until smooth.
  • Add the Parmesan and stir until smooth.
  • Remove from heat and allow to thicken.

Cheesy Chicken Alfredo Roll-Ups

Wow, as a poor soul who just cannot process garlic, the first time I made this recipe I about died. I also, sadly, almost murdered my poor husband with my horrible garlic breath. I would like to see one of these random genetic studies that shows the genetic mutation for people who cannot tolerate garlic… I am, unfortunately, one of those people.

Well, in order to compensate for my deficiency, I have had to drastically alter the recipes for this dinner. To be fair, this was a mash up of a few recipes anyway.

This recipe needs you to do multiple things at one time. The best ideas is to prepare all ingredients (including grating cheese) before starting.

For this recipe to work, you need to use the Easy Alfredo recipe which is next up!

Total cooking time: 2 hrs (READ ALL OF THE NOTES ABOVE AND INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE STARTING)
Hands on time: 1 hour 30 mins ~ish

Ingredients:
9 or 10 Lasagna noodles
~1.5lb of boneless skinless Chicken breast
1-2 TBSP Vegetable Oil
2-6 oz Prosciutto, cooked and crumbled (according to instructions below)
1 small onion, chopped
6 cloves Garlic, minced
1 cup Ricotta
1/2 cup Sour Cream
8oz total Mozzarella, shredded, divided 6 oz + 2 oz
2.5 oz total Parmesan, shredded, divided 2 oz + 0.5 oz
2 TBSP Parsley, dried
1 tsp Onion powder
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
salt and pepper
Easy Alfredo Sauce

Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Prepare an 11×9 Casserole (or smaller) pan with cooking spray.

Part 1: Make the Alfredo sauce (the next recipe on the blog) before starting all of this. Or cook along side if you are good at multitasking and timing!

  • Boil the Chicken until cooked through. Shred the chicken using a Kitchen Aid mixer 🙂
  • Cook the Lasagna noodles until mostly cooked (don’t overcook!), around 9-10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  • In a skillet heat up the Vegetable oil.
  • Cook the Prosciutto until almost crisp… then…
  • Add in the onion and garlic.  Once the onions are softened (about 3 minutes), dump the entire mixture onto a prepared paper towel fat-draining plate.
  • Meanwhile create the cheese mixture, in a large bowl, combine Ricotta, Sour Cream, 6 0z Mozzarella, Parsley, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Salt and Pepper

Part 2:

  • On a greased surface. Lay out the cooked Lasagna noodles.
  • Add ~1/4 cup of Cheese mixture and spread it out on the noodles
  • Top that with ~2 tsp of the Onion/Prosciutto mixture (spread evenly throughout the noodles)
  • Add an even amount of shredded chicken
  • In the prepared baking dish, add enough Alfredo sauce to coat the bottom of the pan
  • Roll each up each prepared lasagna noodle. Place in prepared alfredo sauce pan
  • Top the completed rolls with the remaining Alfredo sauce.
  • Top all with remaining 2 oz of Mozzarella, and 0.5 oz Parmesan
  • Cook at 350, for 20 minutes, then switch to convection at 350 and cook  for another 10 ish minutes until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is mildly browned.

Slow Cooker Chicken and Broccoli Sauce

Another Broccoli based slow cooker meal. This one is super easy to put together aside from chopping up the sun-dried tomatoes.

Total Cooking Time: 4-6 hours

Ingredients:
1 Onion, minced
1/2 cup (1/2 a jar) Oil-packed Sun-Dried Tomatoes, rinsed, patted dry, and sliced thin.
6 cloves Garlic, minced
2 TBSP extra virgin Olive oil
1 tsp dried Thyme
1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
2 cups Low-Sodium Chicken Broth
1/2 cup dry White Wine
2 TBSP Minute Tapioca
1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless Chicken Thighs, trimmed
12 oz. Broccoli florets, cut up
2 oz (1 cup) Parmesan cheese, grated
16 oz Ziti, cooked

Directions:

  • Microwave Onion, 1/4 cup  Tomatoes, Garlic, 1 TBSP Oil, Thyme, Red Pepper Flakes, stirring occasionally until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to the slow cooker.
  • Stir in Broth, Wine, and Tapioca.
  • Season the Chicken with salt and pepper then nestle into the slow cooker. Cover and cook for 4-6 hours on low.
  • Transfer Chicken to cutting board then shred into bite-sized pieces.  Then skim fat from the sauce in slow cooker.
  • Start cooking the ziti.
  • Microwave Broccoli and remaining TBSP of Oil until the broccoli is tender, about 4 minutes. Stir shredded Chicken and Broccoli into the sauce.  Allow to heat through, about 5 minutes.
  • Stir in Parmesan and remaining 1/4 cup Tomatoes.
  • Serve over ziti. Add additional Parmesan and salt and pepper to taste.

White Lasagna with Spicy Sausage

This recipe is just mildly altered from it’s original.  It comes from Guy Fieri, White lasagna with spicy turkey sausage and ‘shrooms.

A couple of notes… The first time we made this, the grocery store was out of turkey sausage. I thought, well, how big of a deal can that really be? Turns out though, it was a dealbreaker for me. The traditional italian sausage way overpowers everything else about this dish and it was just too much for me. My husband loved it, but he even agreed that it was a bit much.

Another suggestion, I was worried with the amount of meat going into this that it needed something else. I found that adding spinach was the perfect compliment. It toned down the overpowering abundance of sausage, at least a little bit. This is also useful since I eliminated the zucchini, which neither my husband nor I really care for.

Lastly, the sauce and cheese mixtures really don’t seem like quite enough, so be very careful to follow the instructions when “building” your lasagna. The amounts are very precise and you don’t want to run out of cheese or sauce.

Total cook time: About 2 hours 30 minutes
Hands on prep time: about 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients:

For the White sauce:
3 TBSP unsalted Butter
4 TBSP Flour
3 cups whole Milk
2.6 oz (3/4 cup) Parmesan cheese, grated
Salt and Pepper, to taste

For the Lasagna:
1 TBSP Olive oil
2 lbs hot Italian Turkey sausage
2.5 oz (3/4 cup) Button mushrooms, sliced
5-6 oz Spinach, rinsed and chopped
Salt and Pepper, to taste
2 tsp granulated Garlic
15 oz whole milk Ricotta
1 large Egg
3.5 oz (1 cup) Parmesan cheese, grated
1 package, no-boil Lasagna noodles
8 oz Mozzarella, shredded
2 TBSP Parsley, finely chopped

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Prepare your dish by spraying with non-stick cooking spray.

Make the Sauce:

  1. Heat a saucepan to medium-high heat. Then add the Butter and allow to melt.
  2. Add in the Flour and stir with wooden spoon for about 2 minutes.
  3. Add in the Milk and bring to a boil while continuing to stir.
  4. Reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 1 minute.
  5. Remove from heat and whisk in the Parmesan cheese.
  6. Season with salt and pepper. Then, set aside.

Make the Lasagna:

  1. In a skillet over medium-high heat, add the Oil and the Turkey sausage.  Cook until just beginning to brown, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the mushrooms and continue to cook until the turkey is golden brown and mushrooms are softened.
  3. Add in the spinach and allow it to just wilt, about 1 minute.
  4. Season with salt and pepper, then set mixture aside.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, combine Ricotta, Egg, Parmesan, 1/2 tsp Kosher salt, and 1/8 tsp cracked Black Pepper.
  6. Build your lasagna (Follow directions or you will run out of ingredients):
    1. Spread 1/4 cup of sauce in the bottom of your dish
    2. Top with 3 lasagna noodles
    3. Then 1 cup of Ricotta mixture
    4. Followed by half of the Turkey mixture
    5. Followed by 1 cup of sauce
    6. Then followed by 1/3 of the Mozzarella.
    7. Repeat starting with 3 lasagna noodles.
    8. After this second layer top with 4 lasagna noodles.
    9. Spread the remaining white sauce.
    10. Top with the remaining Mozzarella
  7. Cover with foil then bake for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven, then remove the foil.  Turn on the broiler.
  9. Place back in oven under the broiler and allow the top to just brown, about a minute.
  10. Garnish with parsley.

Spicy Spaghetti Pie

Here’s another great recipe from the Test kitchen, from Pasta Revolution. Pretty easy to make and shockingly good!

Total prep/cook time: 1hr 15 – 25 mins

 

Spaghetti Pie
12 oz Vermicelli
4 oz sliced deli Pepperoni, chopped fine
1 onion, chopped fine
1/2 tsp Red pepper flakes
3x 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes, puréed
8 oz Mexican cheese blend, shredded
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup fresh basil (one 0.75oz package), chopped fine
1 1/2 cups water, plus more as needed

Directions
1. With oven rack in the middle position, preheat oven to 475 F. Grease a 9 in pie plate.
2. Cook the Vermicelli until al dente. Drain, then return to the pot.
3. Meanwhile, cook pepperoni in a skillet until crisp, about 2 minutes.
4. Stir in onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
5. Stir in red pepper flakes and cook for about 30 seconds.
6. Stir in tomatoes and simmer until sauce has thickened and reduced, about 10 minutes.
7. Add 2 cups of sauce, cream, cheese, and basil to the pasta. Toss to combine.
8. Transfer the pasta into prepared pie plate and press mixture into place with a spatula to flatten.
9. Bake until golden and bubbling, about 15 minutes. Then, let cool for 10-15 minutes.
10. Meanwhile, add the water to the remaining sauce and simmer until the sauce is thickened, about 25 minutes.