If you’re trying to avoid going to the grocer, you’re no doubt figuring out what meals you can make with your possibly dwindling list of ingredients. We just had a bunch of groceries delivered, but mostly basics, so cooking anything out of the ordinary is tough.
Pasta to the rescue! This is a really delicious and simple dish that’s quite filling.
What you’ll need:
(of course this recipe is open to numerous substitutions)
- 8 oz (227g) dry pasta, such as penne, campanelle, gemelli, macaroni, etc.
- 1 28-oz can of diced, crushed or whole peeled tomatoes (tomato sauce works, but it’s not optimal)
- Fresh or dried spices, to taste, such as oregano, thyme, basil, rosemary, sage, marjoram, etc.
- One or two garlic sections, minced or run through a garlic press
- Splash of wine
- Whole or half an onion, finely chopped and sautéed until translucent
- However many sliced mushrooms, roughly chopped and sautéed until they shed some of their liquid
- Some kind of cooked meat, such as bulk Italian sausage, chopped bacon, ground pork, chopped pepperoni, etc.
- 2 or 3T sour cream (optional)
- However much mozzarella cheese you want to use as a topping
What to do:
Empty your canned tomato product into a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir in the spices, garlic and wine. Let barely simmer, with just a blip here and there. Cover with a screen to avoid splashes. Cook this over very low heat for as long as works for you. Just don’t let it dry up or scorch, but it shouldn’t be watery.
Cook and drain the pasta according to package directions.
Remove the tomato sauce from the heat and stir in the cooked pasta, followed by the sautéed onions and mushrooms, and meat. Mix everything well, then add sour cream, if using.
At this point, you could put it back on low heat to warm it up and eat, as is. It will be really good.
OR, dump the pasta mixture into a greased lasagna pan (like in the photos) and spread it evenly across the bottom. Sprinkle over the pasta however much mozzarella cheese you want to use. At this point, you could cover it and refrigerate until later in the day or the next day before baking.
To finish it, cover with foil and cook in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes. Then turn the heat to 450 and cook for 5-10 more minutes. Check to ensure the cheese doesn’t burn.