Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Pizza Pasta

Spaghetti has always been a quick and easy standby for dinner at our house. Brown the ground turkey, cook the rice pasta, toss on the sauce. Done. Until about 6 months ago it was a guaranteed winner, with all three girls inhaling at least half their body weight in pasta. Then one day my 6 year old suddenly decided she didn't like spaghetti sauce anymore. There went the easy and well liked dinner for crazy days.

Tonight, I had a bit of an inspiration driving the kids home. My picky eater used to love pizza sauce. (Long, long ago when we made our own pepperoni rolls.) Why not use it on pasta? And a dinner idea was born.

Of course, only my 2 year old ate it. Three helpings. The other two? New sometimes takes a time or two. I thought it was tasty, and so did my husband. So, it's worth sharing.

Maybe it'll inspire you.

Pizza pasta

1/2 small onion, chpd
6 baby portabella mushrooms, chpd
4 pieces uncured uncooked bacon
2 Al Fresco Sweet Italian sausages
1 14 oz jar of your favorite pizza sauce
12 oz Tinkyada Fusilli pasta (or pasta of your choice)

First, get the pasta started.

Now, chop onion and mushrooms. (And any other pizza toppings you like. We were out of red and green pepper, or that would have gone in too.) Cut bacon into bite sized pieces. Add onion, mushroom and bacon to large skillet to saute. (No oil needed. The bacon will release enough fat to keep everything from sticking.) While those cook, cut sausages in half (or quarters, like we did) lengthwise, then chop into bite sized pieces. When bacon is cooked through, add sausage to skillet to brown, about 5 minutes. Add your pizza sauce and heat through.

Remember that pasta? Drain it, rinse it. Decide whether to mix it with the sauce or serve a bed of pasta topped with a ladle of sauce.

The great thing about this recipe is you can change it up to suit your pizza passion. Toss in some zucchini, leave out the bacon, whatever fits your family. And if you eat cheese, it would be great with a sprinkle of mozzarella. Yum!

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