Saturday, October 6, 2012

Delicious Baked Ziti

This is one of our favorite meals and very rich and comforting..especially on a very chilly fall evening.
Emmeline loves it and she gobbles it right up every time we have it for dinner.
I came up with this recipe by using my Moms ziti recipe and just adding in a few other things that I love.
My mom was always skimpy with the cheese!
She does not like cheese??
I mean I don't even know anyone besides her that would say they do not like cheese...but....different strokes for different folks...
We like cheese in this house...sorry Mom!

Recipe for Baked Ziti

1 box Ziti Rigatoni
1 cup Mozzarella cheese
3 cups Ricotta cheese
1/2 cup/4 oz Provolone cheese sliced thin
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 1/2 jars of tomato sauce of your choice ( I usually use my own sauce but jar sauce works fine)
1 cup of sliced mushrooms
1 medium green pepper
2 cloves garlic
2-3 tbsp olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Oregano to taste
1/2 cup fresh parsley handfull...eyeball it

Start by cooking your pasta ..I cook mine about 4 minutes less than the directions because I hate mushy pasta and it will cook more while in the oven

Drain and set aside

Brown your ground beef and drain off any fat and set aside
Using the same pan add the olive oil and saute the mushrooms, green pepper and garlic.
Add ground beef back and season to taste with salt, pepper and oregano

Add your sauce and some 1/4 cup parmesan cheese...mix well and simmer about 15 minutes

While your meat sauce is simmering combine the ricotta cheese, sour cream and parmesan cheese and 1/2 of your fresh parsley.

Start to layer your ziti in greased casserole dish...
Sauce on the bottom, pasta,ricotta cheese mixture, mozzarella, provolone and parmesan.
Keep layering until your dish is full...
Finish with mozzarella on top and sprinkle fresh parsely over.

Bake at 350 degrees for one hour covered.
Uncover and let it bake another 10-15 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and deliciously brown.

This makes about 8-10 servings...easily!
You can freeze this too...freezes very nicely for another meal.

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