Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas 2014

A heartfelt Merry Christmas from our home to yours...

May the winds of love and joy 

visit your homes this Christmas 

and live with you and your family 

for today and forever.

Wishing you and your family a 

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Million Dollar Pasta

Do you love lasagna but dread taking the time to fix it? Here is a really quick pasta dish that makes a pretty close substitute. I have seen a zillion repostings of "Million Dollar Spaghetti" the past week and decided to give this a try. Andy said he'd rather eat this instead of lasagna. The recipe online was lacking in measurements, so I have included what I used.

You know me, I'm going to use what is in my pantry first even if I have to tweak the recipe a little. I chose to use penne pasta instead of spaghetti. I'll use it again since it's easier to eat.

The only thing I'll do differently next time is remember to add the Italian spices to the cheese. I had a doctor's appointment earlier that day and she told me she'd like to see me lose five pounds a year for the next four years so by the time I turn 55, I'll have lost twenty pounds. I'd like to see that myself. We will have to wait and see. I guess I was relating that conversation to Andy when I was mixing the cheese and forgot the spice. Guess what? It still tasted really good!

1 lb. box penne pasta or spaghetti
1 lb. ground beef (or ground Italian sausage)
1 small onion, chopped 
1 jar spaghetti sauce
8 oz. ricotta cheese
4 oz. sour cream
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
Garlic salt and Italian spices to taste
2 cup bag shredded Mozzarella cheese
Shredded or grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  1. Cook pasta per directions on the box, drain and set to the side.
  2. Brown ground beef with chopped onion. Season with a little garlic salt. Drain grease and add jar of spaghetti sauce. Turn on low and let simmer.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese, sour cream and ricotta cheese together until smooth. Add some Italian spices to taste.
Spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.
Spread half the pasta and cover with the cheese and Italian seasoning mixture.

Top with remaining pasta and cover with the meat/sauce mix.
Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 20 minutes
Remove from oven. Top with Parmesan and shredded Mozzarella cheese.
 Bake uncovered until cheese is melted.
Serve with garlic bread and a salad.