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Baked Ziti




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For this you will need:

Two large bottles of good pasta sauce or tomato sauce and spices.

Italian sausage mild or hot.

Pound of ground beef.

Some onion.

Some garlic.

Salt, pepper, Italian seasoning.

Pound box of ziti Pasta (you can also use rotini or rigatoni pasta).

Package of mixed Italian Cheese.

Package of Mozzarella cheese.

Canned or fresh diced tomatoes.

Green bell pepper.

A glass casserole dish or a baking pan.

Extra virgin olive oil.

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A frying pan to cook the meat.

A large pot to pre-cook the ziti.

A medium to large sauce pan for the tomato sauce and diced tomatoes.

Colander.

Cutting knife.

Cutting board.

Serving spoon.

Several bowls or plates to hold prepared ingredients.

First, Pre-heat the oven to three-fifty.

Next:

Dice up several cloves of garlic.

Dice up your onion.

If you are using fresh tomatoes dice them up.

Dice up your bell pepper.

After doing the above:

In your sauce pan add one jar of pasta sauce.

or your tomato sauce and if you have any, tomato paste.

You need more than a quart of total red sauce.

Add your diced tomatoes to the sauce in the pan.

Heat to a boil and reduce to a simmer.

Add salt.

Pepper.

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Lots of Italian seasoning.

Some of your garlic.

Some of your onions.

All of your diced green peppers.

Add some olive oil.

If the mixture is too tart add a little sugar.

Allow to remain on simmering heat until assembly.

Next:

A tad of oil in your hot frying pan.

Cut up and fully cook your Italian sausage.

Dump into the colander and flush with water to remove excess fat. Put this on some paper towels and set aside.

Break up the ground beef and put that into the frying pan. You can leave the sausage grease that remains.

Dump your cooked ground beef into the colander and flush with water.

Clean your frying pan with water and paper towels. Put back on the heat.

Add more olive oil.

Add some of the garlic and onions. Allow them to dissolve for a bit.

Put your ground beef back into the pan.

Add salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.

Stir and mix with a serving spoon.

After a short while remove from heat, cover and set aside.

Fill a large pot more than half way with water.

Add some salt.

Add some olive oil.

Bring to a boil.

Add your pasta.

Cook to just under al dante. It should be a little chewy but not crunchy. You don't want this fully cooked to eating level, because we are going to casserole this in our oven.

Place in colander and flush with water. Set aside.

The ideal way to make this is by layering, much like you would do for lasagna.

In your casserole dish add a little of the simmered tomato mixture to cover the bottom.

Add a layer of pasta.

Add a layer of ground beef.

Add a little of the sausage.

Add some of the Italian cheese that is grated.

Pour some sauce over this to cover.

More pasta, beef, sausage and cheese.

Cover with sauce.

Continue layering until all ingredients except your Mozzarella are used up.

Top with the mozzarella cheese.

Put a sheet of aluminum on the rack in your oven.

Put the casserole dish or baking pan into the oven.

Bake until the top layer of cheese is tan with some dark brown, but no black or burnt areas.

Remove from the oven.

Use your serving spoon to dish out sections of this with the cheese, pasta and all layers.

You can refrigerate the rest and cut it like lasagna after it is chilled.

There you have it.

Bake ziti.

Enjoy!


 

 
 


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