Rachel's Recipes

Archive for the ‘Main Course’ Category

This is a simple, but delicious weeknight dinner.

Ingredients
1 Tablespoon oil
1 medium onion chopped
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 pound bulk sweet Italian sausage
1 cup half and half
28 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
8 oz can tomato sauce (mine was seasoned with basil and oregano)
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 box penne or farfalle pasta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for garnish

Directions
Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add shallots and garlic and sauté until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add sausages and sauté until no longer pink, breaking up with back of fork, about 5 minutes. Add cream; simmer 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with juices, sage and crushed red pepper. Simmer until sauce thickens, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid.

Return pasta to same pot; add sauce. Toss over medium heat until sauce coats pasta, adding reserved cooking liquid by 1/4 cupfuls if mixture is dry. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl; sprinkle with cheese and serve.

I was watching Food Network’s Throwdown and the next thing I knew, I was making these meatballs for dinner. I love the saltiness from the Romano cheese and I always have a package of ground chuck on hand so these were quick for me to throw together.

Ingredients
1 pound ground chuck
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
4 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
3/4 cup grated Romano
3 ounces grated Spanish onion
4 Tablespoons finely diced fresh garlic
4 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves (I used 1 heaping Tablesoon of dried parsley)
4 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil leaves (I used 1 heaping Tablesoon of dried basil)

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray. (I actually prefer to first line my baking sheet with foil and then spray with cooking spray, although these did release pretty easily from the baking sheet.)

Mix all ingredients thoroughly in large bowl. If mixture seems a little loose add more bread crumbs.

Roll meatballs loosely about the size of a golf ball and place on baking sheet. Place into preheated oven for approximately 35 to 40 minutes.

I froze half the batch to be used for a quick dinner later.

Source: Food Network

The only downside of this dish is that it requires two pots and one skillet. That said, the dish comes together than clean up!

Ingredients
1 pound bacon, chopped (I didn’t have a full pack so I used only about 1/2-3/4)
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 pound rigatoni or penne pasta
1/2 cups heavy cream (I used skim milk since that was all I had on hand)
1/4 cups cream cheese (I used neufchatel)
1/4 cups Parmesan cheese, grated
2 eggs
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions
Set a pot of water on the stove to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water and drain.

Cook the bacon in a skillet and sprinkle with red pepper flakes.

In a small saucepan, heat the heavy cream and cream cheese over low and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat and whisk in the Parmesan and pepper. Whisk in the eggs.

Toss the pasta with the sauce to coat. Stir in the bacon, and add some reserved pasta water if needed to loosen the sauce.

Source: Tasty Kitchen

I used skim milk and just a little butter for this recipe and it was still rich and delicious.

Ingredients
1 Tablepoon oil
1/4 pound chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
8 oz chopped broccoli, thawed
1 Tablespoon butter (technically I used 1.5 Tablespoons since that was the end of my stick)
1 Tablespoon flour
1 1/2 cups skim milk
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
pinch of nutmeg
3/4 cup Parmesan, grated
12 oz fresh fettuchine

Directions
Set a pot of water on the stove to boil.

In a small frying pan, heat the oil. Add the chicken. In the last couple minutes of cooking time, add the broccoli. Cook until the chicken and broccoli are cooked through.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan. Whisk in the flour and cook for a few seconds. Whisk in the milk and cook until slightly thickened. Add the spices and the Parmesan over low heat.

Add the chicken and broccoli to the sauce pan and combine.

Boil the pasta according to the package directions (just a couple minutes). Drain. Add to the saucepan, tossing to coat the noodles.

Leave it to Cook’s Illustrated to figure out how you can make mac and cheese using just one pot by cooking the pasta in a skillet! (Although I cheated and used my dutch oven because I didn’t trust myself not to splash things everwhere.) This is a really tasty, creamy, easy, and quick recipe to put together! Eric said next time he wants to try just sharp cheddar cheese, but I thought it was pretty tasty as is.

Ingredients
3 1/2 cups water
12 oz can evaporated milk, divided
12 ounces (about 3 cups) elbow macaroni
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small chunks
Ground black pepper to taste

Directions
Bring the water, 1 cup of evaporated milk, macaroni, and salt to a simmer in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat. Cook at a vigorous simmer, stirring often, until the macaroni is tender and the liquid has thickened, 9 to 12 minutes.

In a small bowl (or in your measuring cup), whisk the remaining 1/2 cup evaporated milk, cornstarch, mustard, and hot sauce together. Stir into the pasta and continue to simmer slightly thickened, about 1 minute.

Turn off the heat and slowly stir in the cheeses a little at a time until the cheese is fully incorporated. Stir in the butter and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Source: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe (adapted from The Best Skillet Recipes)

This is a meal that doesn’t require too much prep (you’re only chopping an onion and some garlic) and cooks all in one skillet, which makes it perfect for an easy weekday meal.

Ingredients
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound ground turkey (or lean ground beef)
1 onion, diced
3/4 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon brown sugar
15 oz can tomato sauce
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes with green chiles
2 cups water
2 cups elbow noodles
1 cup frozen corn
2 cups shredded cheese (Mexican or cheddar blend)

Directions
Heat the oil in a 12 inch skillet. Add the turkey (or beef), onions, chili powder, cumin, and salt and cook until the meat is browned. Stir in garlic and brown sugar and cook until fragrant (less than a minute).

Stir in tomato sauce, tomatoes, water, and pasta and cover with a lid. Stir often to maintain a steady simmer and cook until the pasta is tender, about 12-15 minutes.

Remove from heat. Stir in one cup of cheese and the corn. Top with the remaining cheese and cover for a 2-3 minutes, until the cheese is melted.

Adapted from: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

For Christmas dinner every year, my grandmother makes homemade lasagna. It’s a family favorite and a nice change during a season filled with turkeys. You can also prepare this ahead of time and freeze it for an easy meal later.

Ingredients
1 pound ground beef
2 tsp Lawry’s seasoned salt (my spice blend doesn’t have salt in it so I add some of that too)
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp pepper
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 package spaghetti sauce mix (Lawrey’s and McCormick make them–they’re near the taco seasoning and gravy packets)
8 oz can tomato sauce
1/2 pound lasagna noodles
1/2 pound Mozzarella cheese, sliced or shredded (I use one package of preshredded)
1/2 pound cottage cheese (the small container)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

Directions
Brown the meat in a Dutch oven or deep kettle. Mix in seasoned salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, and spaghetti sauce mix. Stir thoroughly and cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

While the sauce is simmering, boil the lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain and rinse.

In a 9×13 pan, pour 1/3 of the meat sauce. Cover with the lasagna noodles, cottage cheese, and mozzarella. Repeat layers ending with the meat sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes until cheese is bubbly.

To freeze, prepare as for baking. When ready to cook, thaw and bake.