Hi Interwebs Friends!
Are you watching the Olympics? Tell me what you like. I’m a swimmer, so I love to watch those amazing athletes fly across the pool. And I love it when you come across an Olympic sport and think, ‘Why the hell is this even a sport?’ and then an hour later you’re sobbing because you NEED China to win women’s archery. We are the world, people.
Last Saturday night I took my kids to our favorite children’s bookstore for the midnight release of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. We drank Pumpkin juice, played trivia (I won a book light for naming the three unforgivable curses), and best of all, talked to other Potterheads all night long. I stayed up most of the night reading and finished it the next morning and have So. Many. Thoughts. Have you read it? What did you think?
In other news: I have lost all will to cook because it’s hot and cranky here in Southern California. Last week, my friend Honoree Corder sent out a recipe for Magic Baked Spaghetti, and I decided to make it so I could feed my family something besides cereal for dinner. I made a lot of alterations to the original recipe because that’s just what I do. But here is the cool thing: this recipe is super easy to double, so now I have a second pan of it ready to go in the freezer for the next time I don’t feel like cooking. Which will probably be, like, tomorrow.
Easy Baked Pasta
1 lb noodles, cooked al dente and drained (I used spaghetti, but any noodle will work)
1 lb ground beef, ground turkey, or ground Italian sausage, cooked and drained
1 jar spaghetti sauce
1 tsp chili flakes (more or less to your own taste)
8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup fresh basil, finely minced
1 cup sour cream
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray Pam on the bottom and sides of a 9×13 inch baking dish.
Mix together the cooked meat, basil, chili flakes, and spaghetti sauce.
Beat together the cream cheese, sour cream, and ricotta cheese until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Place half the cooked noodles in your greased pan. Spoon half of the cream cheese mixture on the noodles and smear over the top as easily as possible. Spread with half of the meat sauce mixture. Repeat the layers – noodles, cheese mixture, sauce. Top with the grated mozzarella cheese.
Bake 20-30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.
*This recipe doubles beautifully. Double all ingredients, prepare in two casserole pans, and freeze the second one before baking. When ready to eat, defrost and bake as directed.
above photo via Unsplash.