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Friday, December 6, 2013

Rotini Bake

Photos courtesy of the Cooking Corner.

     When you want to make an Italian dinner but want a little variety, try changing the noodles and baking a casserole. This rotini dish uses your basic pasta sauce, Italian spices and flavors to make an easy meal that stretches.
     Brown your favorite ground meat with onion, garlic and peppers and then add it to a pasta sauce. Cook the noodles and then combine with sauce, pour into a casserole to finish in the oven. How easy is that? Now you have those great Italian flavors in one filling dish.

Rotini Bake
1 lb. ground Italian sausage
1/2 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1 jar favorite pasta sauce
2 dozen pepperoni slices
8 oz. (1/2 pkg.) rotini noodles
1-8 oz. pkg. shredded Mozzarella cheese

1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. basil
1/4 tsp. thyme
* 1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

In large pot, boil 8 cups salted water. When at a rolling boil, add pasta and cook for 8-10 minutes until slightly firm. Drain and cover off heat.

In large skillet, brown meat for 5 minutes. Add onion, garlic and peppers, cooking until veggies are soft and meat is no longer pink. Drain excess grease.

Preheat oven to 350. Spray or grease 13x9x2 inch baking dish.

Add sauce and spices to skillet, stirring well. Mix in cooked pasta, combining well.

Pour into baking dish, spreading evenly. Top with shredded cheese and bake 25-30 minutes until warm and cheese melted. Serves 6-8.

Casserole ready for oven.

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