Thursday, September 16, 2010

Baked Rotini

1 pkg. rotini
1 pkg. ground beef
1 onion, diced
1 jar pasta sauce
1 pkg. fresh mushrooms, quartered
1 can black olives, drained and halved
2 cloves garlic, pressed
Italian seasoning, to taste
brown sugar, to taste
mozzarella cheese, shredded

Cook pasts as directed on package. Brown beef and onions; drain.

In a large saucepan, combine beef and onions, sauce, mushrooms, olives, garlic, and Italian seasoning. Heat thoroughly. Add brown sugar by small handfuls until desired flavor is reached. (If you prefer a less sweet sauce, omit brown sugar.) Simmer 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add pasta to sauce and mix well. Pour into a large casserole dish and top with cheese. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Serve hot.

A fresh garden salad or Caesar salad is a perfect pairing!

Vegetable Soup

2 8-oz. cans tomato sauce
2 cans whole kernel corn, with liquid
2 cans sliced carrots, with liquid
2 cans potatoes, with liquid, cut into bite-size pieces
2 cans green beans, with liquid
salt and pepper to taste

Bring all ingredients to a slow boil in a large soup pot; simmer 10-15 minutes.

*I usually brown a pound of ground beef and add for some protein and a little extra flavor.

*Feel free to use fewer cans of vegetables or to add cans of different vegetables to suit your family's preferences. Be sure you always include the liquid from the can or add an equivalent amount of water to keep plenty of broth in the soup.

*You can use fresh vegetables instead of canned ones, but cooking time will need to be increased until vegetables are tender.

*Fresh, hot cornbread is a perfect complement.