Recipe: Spaghetti Hotdish

Here is a quick dish I threw together on Friday when we were fasting from meat. It’s a “hotdish,” which is another word for casserole if you live in the Midwest.

Just a heads up…my recipe is not exact. I just make it up as I go, and I am flexible about making things work. I hope you will get the idea. Cooking is not an exact science all the time, especially if you are using cheese. Cheese can make most everything taste great!

Want a quick run-down of the recipe? Here it is!

  • Put cooked noodles in the bottom of a casserole dish.
  • Put cooked mixed veggies on top.
  • Pour 1-2 glass jars of spaghetti sauce on top; don’t let it become soup.
  • Top with shredded cheese.
  • Use a glass cover on top, or aluminum foil.
  • Cook in the oven at 350 F for about 30-45 minutes, or until cheese is melted evenly.

Would you like more details? Here it is!

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Spaghetti Hotdish

Ingredients:

  • 2 jars of spaghetti sauce (~24 oz each)
  • Frozen bag of mixed veggies (~16-24 oz), such as a mix with corn, carrots, peas, and green beans
  • Gluten free spiral nice noodles from Tinkyada¬† (16 oz), or spaghetti noodles of your choice
  • Shredded cheese mix, such as a 4-cheese, Mexican blend

Recipe:

  1. Boil rice noodles. Cook it two minutes shorter than what is on the package. Some liquid from the spaghetti sauce will be absorbed while it cooks in the oven. If you are using gluten free noodles, after you drain them in a strainer, run cold water on them briefly. This prevents over-cooking while you prepare other food.
  2. Steam or boil mixed veggies. Drain.
  3. Get out two Corning-ware dishes, or a glass dish (e.g., 9×13). For this recipe, I used two Corning-ware dishes, but I think it would have fit in a 9×13. I liked having it broken up into two dishes. I made it at 11am. Then I had one for lunch that provided some leftovers, and I had a “neat” looking one for dinner. Two of us ate it for dinner on the second day, too–that was almost three meals!
  4. Spread the noodles evenly on the bottom of the pan. Spread the veggies on top. Pour the spaghetti sauce on top. You don’t want it to be overly liquidy; if it is starting to look like soup, stop pouring the spaghetti sauce. Use the back of a spoon to even out the sauce and make the top relatively flat. Don’t mix it all up as if it were a mixing bowl; you want to keep the noodles on the bottom and let the sauce seep through.
  5. Spread shredded cheddar cheese on top. Cover with a glass lid, or use aluminum foil.
  6. Heat the oven to 350 or 375 F. This recipe is flexible. If you want it done sooner, heat it at 375 for about 25-30 minutes. If you want it done later, put it in at 350 F for 45-minutes. Either way, be sure to cover it. Take it out once the cheese is melted and enjoy!

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Would you like an idea for a yummy side? Serve it with a salad and a variety of salad dressings. It’s a really good compliment! We had a baby spinach and romaine mix in our fridge (the kind you can get in a plastic container and is pre-rinsed). I had no toppings for it (e.g., cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots, strawberries, etc.), but I served it anyway. The children didn’t mind. Salad dressings are magical for making salads taste good. My 3-year-old daughter gets incredibly excited if there is pink salad dressing! Try different salad dressing colors for your children, and you might find some that become favorites.

 

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