Friday, April 9, 2010

Baked Ziti

Friends of ours just had a baby, so Brian and I thought it would be fun to whip up this Baked Ziti dish for them to enjoy. Plus, we doubled the recipe, which means we get to feast on some as well!

Cast of Characters: Italian sausage, spaghetti sauce, Penne pasta, sour cream, mozzarella cheese, sliced provolone cheese and fresh basil.

You'll notice it's called Baked Ziti, but we're actually using Penne pasta instead. If you can find Ziti, use it!

Start out browning the Italian sausage much like you would ground beef or turkey. Because sausage is so much stickier, though, remember to really break it apart and move it around in the pan.

While you are cooking the meat, boil water to cook the pasta. And throw in a little salt to make it boil faster!

When the sausage is completely cooked, drain the fat into a coffee can. Or do what my smart hubby did and line a glass bowl with foil and pour the liquid onto the foil liner. Then, when the liquid has cooled, pull the liner out of the bowl, fold the sides over and deposit it into the trash can. The bowl will still be clean as a whistle! :-)

Next, pour some spaghetti sauce into the fry pan, stir up the meat and sauce, and let it simmer for awhile.

Now is a good time to check on your pot of water. Is it boiling yet? If so, slide your noodles into the pot and stir them up a bit.

While the flavors from the meat and sauce are mingling, spray a casserole dish with Pam.

When the noodles are ready, pour half of the pasta into the pan.

Top the pasta with four slices of provolone cheese.

Sprinkle the provolone slices with more cheese--the mozzarella kind!

As Brian would say, "Be generous; put lots on!"

Cover the cheese with half of the meat sauce.

Drizzle the meat sauce with sour cream and spread it around.

Layer on more Penne (or Ziti) pasta.

Then, more meat sauce.

Followed by more mozzarella cheese. You can never have too much cheese, right?!

Chop up some fresh basil and...

...sprinkle it atop your concoction. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Buon appetito,

P.S. Here are the ingredients again, along with the quantities we used. Keep in mind that we doubled the recipe.

4 pounds of Italian sausage
2 big jars of Prego sauce (67 ounces each)
3 lbs. of Penne pasta
2 containers of light sour cream
2 lbs. of Mozzarella cheese
Package of sliced provolone (8 slices)
Fresh basil

1 comment:

Alicia said...

Looks yummy!!!

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