First up: Manicotti
Combine 1 container (16 ounces) ricotta cheese, 2 cups shredded mozzarella, 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 2 tblsp's grated parmesan cheese, 2 beaten eggs, and 1/2 tsp minced garlic in large bowl
Stuff mixture into uncooked manicotti shells, using narrow rubber spatula. Place filled shells in 13 x 9 baking dish. Preheat oven to 375
**I can't lie to you guys, the smallest rubber spatula I have is still too big. God graced me with fingers for such an occasion.
Cook 1 lb ground beef in large skillet over medium-high heat until no longer pink, stirring to separate. Drain excess fat. Stir in 1 jar (26 oz) spaghetti sauce and 2 cups water (mixture will be thin). Pour sauce over filled manicotti shells.
Cover with foil; bake 1 hour or until sauce has thickened and shells are tender.
We went all Italian up in here! It was a pretty superfabulous pairing of the garlic breadsticks (and the green beans because such is the rule: a fruit with breakfast and a veggie with din din) with this meal, but I think next time I'll make garlic bread...where I make the bread and the garlic sauce. Stay tuned.
The Italian extravaganza continues: Fettuccine alla carbonara
minus the fettuccini, plus little squirly pasta. I think it's called Rotini?
While your 16 oz package of dried fettucini (or whatever pasta you want, really) is boiling away, slice 4 oz proscuitto, and finely chop enough onion for two tblsp's
As I mentioned up yonder, there's always a veggie with dinner, so I'm steaming broccoli. I get this going at the beginning of the prep and let it steam, on low heat, until I'm ready to serve so that it's outta the way. Make it a KISS operation, amiright?!
I've never cooked with wine before, so I had no idea where to find it. In our grocery store, for those not in the know like muhself, it's over there by the olive oils and maybe even the apple cider vinegar. Or, you could just completely tapout and ask someone right out of the gate. I recommend the latter if you're shopping with small children.
((I forgot to take a picture of cooking the 8 slices of bacon. I'm sure you can imagine such a feat ;-) But, cook the bacon in a large skillet until crisp and drain well on paper towels. Coarsely crumble the bacon and set aside ))
Back to the present: In a medium saucepan, cook onion in 3/4 c hot butter over medium heat for 4 minutes or until tender. Add prosciutto. Cook and stir over medium heat for 3 minutes. Remove pan from heat. Add 1/3 c dry white wine.
Return saucepan to heat and bring mixture to boiling. Boil gently, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Stir in the bacon, 1/2 c whipping cream, and 1/2 c milk; bring to boiling. Boil gently, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
Stir in 1/4 c parmesan and 1 tblsp parsley (I didn't have parsley and this crap was still off the heezy, yo). Immediately pour sauce over pasta, stirring gently to coat. It's important to do it gently or the pasta might begin to tear. Evenly distribute another 1/4 parmesan amongst each plate served. Pepper to taste.
This dish was sooo good! Initially, when I poured the sauce, I was worried because, like other sauces, this carbonara sauce didn't coat like you'd anticipate; it seems as though it was almost absorbed by the pasta....with still wicked amounts of taste! Gary put it in the Top Five Dinner Rotation.
We get all official and shit.
And, lastly, Hamburger Cheese bake
Brown 1 lb ground beef and 1/2 c chopped onion.
I got this recipe from my allrecipes.com dinner spinner app, and it didn't say to drain the meat after browning; maybe they just forgot? Either way, I drained it and everyone survived.
And, bring a pot to boiling for 1lb pasta, whatever shape your little heart desires. Then, cook accordingly.
Spread half the pasta in the bottom of a greased, 12 x 8 pan
Top with half the meat mixture
Top that with all the cheese mixture.
Then again with remaining pasta, then top with remaining meat mixture. Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese--the recipe calls for 1/4 c parmesan, but I love parmesan in a bad way so I added it to our liking.
Bake, in a preheated oven, at 350 for 30 minutes. (I baked 25 minutes). Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
The thing about this meal? You have to like the taste of cream cheese, as it's very apparent. That not one of our favorite flavors in the known universe, but we wouldn't have known unless we tried!
Deep, I am.
If you don't know the incredible taste sensation that is In N Out run to your google box.
This is why we'll have leftovers right up until the zombie apocalypse.
Plusalso?? I found a natural bulk store last weekend that I swear on Bart Simpson has me giddy as a schoolgirl. So, guess what's happening soon? Homemade breads, homemade vanilla extract, homemade teas... You guys? OBSESSED. I could've dropped a paycheck in there. But, I probably won't. Oh, and the employees are deliciously hipster. The one with unintentional dreads referred to me as "Man" in his reply. As in, "Yeah, Man, the vanilla beans are in the corner"