Wednesday, February 17, 2010

toddler approved, tasty tuesday....on wednesday

so sorry this is late, i was excited to share my other news and totally forgot to get this posted:
This week I thought that I would share a recipe that is so easy to make and delicious! Plus, using last weeks tips and tricks you can make it veggie loaded. here is the recipe, and below are some additional tips/suggestions.

Baked Ziti

1 pound dry ziti pasta
1 onion, chopped
1 pound lean ground beef
2 (26 ounce) jars spaghetti sauce
6 ounces provolone cheese, sliced
1 1/2 cups sour cream
6 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti pasta, and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes; drain.
2. In a large skillet, brown onion and ground beef over medium heat. Add spaghetti sauce, and simmer 15 minutes.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Layer as follows: 1/2 of the ziti, Provolone cheese, sour cream, 1/2 sauce mixture, remaining ziti, mozzarella cheese and remaining sauce mixture. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.
4. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheeses are melted.

Doesn't that sound freaking delicious? yeah well it is, i promise. and yes it calls for sour cream, no you cannot even tell that it's in there. i suppose if you really wanted to you could omit it and it's taste just as good. now when i make it i follow the recipe with 2 exceptions.
  1. Instead of regular ziti pasta, I use Ronzoni Smart Taste 'Penne Rigate' noodles. These noodles taste exactly like regular pasta but have "Three times the fiber and calcium equal to an eight-ounce glass of milk."  These noodles cost a little bit more but are so worth it! The website has a printable coupon and we usually buy them for much less at Sam's Club.
  2. As I mentioned in last weeks post, use veggie loaded sauces! Nothing makes this pasta dish better than chunks of tomatos and onion. Delish! This is also super easy to sneak those pureed carrots into; the cheeses mask the taste :) 
make it, and let me know what you think! 

oh and word to the wise--this will fill a 9x13 dish to the point of (almost) overflowing. it makes a ton! if you want, i recommend splitting it between two 8x8pans; putting one in the oven to bake and one in the freezer to thaw for an easy meal on another night.

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