Thursday, February 7, 2008

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And she cooks!

Believe it or not I do cook. Granted it's not always great, but I try my best. Luckily enough I am very fortunate to have a husband who is not super critical of the food I make. I am definitely my own worst critic, but it's hard not to be when I take so much pride in food and how it tastes.

Last night I decided to make something that would be good for leftovers. I made Baked Ziti and used a recipe I found on AllRecipes. This recipe called for both ground beef and pork, but I only used beef. I also added 4 more ounces of cheese. I think I did a good thing with the small changes I made because as soon as the food landed on Alex's taste buds he said "mmmm." There wasn't a delayed reaction or a generic "it's good, I promise." It was instantaneous and I felt great.

Baked Ziti (my adaptation)

- 1 pound dry ziti pasta
- 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 cloves of garlic chopped
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 jar of spaghetti sauce (I used roasted garlic)
- 1 (8 oz) packaged of sliced provolone cheese
- Salt to taste
- 3/4 cup sour cream
- 3/4 cottage cheese
- 1 (8 oz) package of shredded mozzarella


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 x 13 baking dish. Combine the sour cream and cottage cheese and set aside.
2. Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook pasta for about 10 minutes or until al dente and then drain
3. Meanwhile heat olive oil in a skillet on low heat and cook garlic for about a minute; remove garlic and set it aside
4. In the same skillet over medium heat brown the ground beef. Once browned, remove from heat and drain the excess fat. Return to heat and add garlic and spaghetti sauce. Season with salt and then simmer for 10 minutes.
5. In the prepared dish, layer 1/2 of the cooked pasta, all of the provolone cheese, sour cream-cottage cheese mixture, and 1/2 of the meat mixture. Then create another layer of pasta and meat mixture and top with the mozzarella cheese.
6. Bake in preheated oven for 20-30 minutes or until heated through and cheeses are melted.
7. Eat and enjoy!

For the original Baked Ziti IV recipe, please click here.

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