Wednesday, January 13, 2016


It is so incredibly cold here in Minneapolis now and cold makes me hungry all the time! I enjoy soups,stews,cheesy pasta dish etc around this time of the year. Lasagna is definitely an indulgent dish perfect for this cold weather. I usually make them with the flat Lasagna noodles but this time, I thought of using a different shaped pasta.A Ziti. The flavours were spot on and it made a tasty meal!

I made this dish using Bertolli Riserva Marinara with Parmigiano Reggiano. It's is my brand of choice for a good bottled marinara.The flavours are well balanced and they have many flavours of marinara sauce now.
This meal can be made ahead of time and frozen. I do that quite a bit nowadays to save time. When I made it, I divided it into two pans and froze one right away. Whenever you are ready for a lazy day,just pull it out of the freezer a few hours before you need it,let it thaw completely and then bake it as mentioned in the directions.
Ian is a pasta lover! He enjoys taking it with him to school and looks forward to eating it at lunch time.He loves Pizza too,especially the ones we get in Costco. It's a huge slice but my little man can eat it,even if Jobin and I have to share one slice! It's been a while since I made Pizza at home...hmmm! These days, I fulfill all of my baking dreams in school,so I rarely bake anymore at home other than our usual stuff like a Roast Chicken, Fish Pie, Baked Pasta,Kebabs,Wings etc. I really miss that point of time in my life when I had ALL the time in the world to myself to do all what I wanted to do! Life is incredibly good right now but I certainly miss my 'me -time'!.

Now back to this delicious pasta dish...I found this recipe on My Recipes.com and this one is a keeper!


12 ounces Ziti
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound ground lean beef
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoon dried oregano,crushed
1 26 ounce bottle of Bertolli Reserva Pasta Sauce
1/2 cup Parmesan
1 15 ounce container Ricotta
1 10 ounce container frozen spinach,thawed and squeezed to remove liquid
1 cup grated Mozzarella

Method: Cook pasta according to the instructions on the box.

In a large pot one medium -heat, cook onions in 1 tablespoon oil,salt and pepper until soft, 5-7 minutes.Add ground beef,crumble it up using a spoon and cook until it's no longer pink, 7-8 minutes. Drain off the excess liquid.Add the garlic and oregano and cook for 2 minutes. Add the pasta sauce and cook for another 3 minutes.Remove from heat.

Add the pasta and toss to mix. Add Parmesan, ricotta and spinach. Toss well to coat. Transfer the pasta to a 9X13 inch baking dish.Top it with Mozzarella and bake at 400F for 20 minutes or until the cheese has melted.

*If you are planning to freeze it, do not bake it. Let it cool completely, then wrap it in two layers of foil and freeze it for upto 3 months. Thaw it in the fridge overnight and bake covered at 350F for 1 hour. Uncover and bake until Mozzarella melts.

Did I tell you that Jobin is going to school now? He joined Columbia University, New York in September. He is currently in New York for 5 days and I am praying that I don't have to go out in this super duper cold weather for any kind of shopping,grocery especially. I am just using up all what I have on hand in the fridge and freezer. It's a crockpot Chicken Wild Rice soup for dinner tonight! Just the thought of having soup for dinner is making me feel warm and nice!


Unknown said...

Hey Ria,

Nice post & yum too. It is good breakfast for children. My nephew like pasta. This Monday he has lunch party. I am going to make this for the lunch party. Thanks for the idea.


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