Monday, February 20, 2012

Wild Card: On The Farm Pasta

I have a special treat for you all in this month's wild card. I'm about to share one of my absolute favorite recipes: On The Farm Pasta. I called it that since it includes about everything you would find on a farm: whole grain, chicken, dairy, and veggies. It is easy. It is delicious. And it makes plenty for left overs.
Even Cricket wants some
This simplistic, delicious & nutritious recipe calls for... 
1 package of whole grain ziti 
6 oz organic baby spinach leaves, washed 
1 jar of pasta sauce 
1 package to cheese chicken sausage 
1 c ricotta cheese 
½ c grated mozzarella cheese 
½ c grated parmesan cheese 
½ t garlic powder 
¼ t ground black powder 
Save for topping: 
½ c mozzarella 
¼ c parmesan cheese

You will want to heat a big pot of water (with some olive oil) & cook your ziti as directed on the box. And I know it sounds crazy, but when there is one minute left for it to cook, throw your spinach in the pot. It will wilt the spinach & allow the pasta to absorb some flavor.

While the water & pasta are boiling, prepare your other ingredients. I normally put all three of the cheeses & spices into a bowl. Be sure to also cut up the chicken sausage as desired.

After your pasta/spinach is ready. Strain & pour back into the large pot. Then add the pasta sauce, chicken sausage, cheese & spices. Mix well. 
Looking yummy
When all that is said & done, pour mixture into a large baking pan. I normally forget to grease it & I found that it doesn't leave too much of a mess. After you get the mixture spread into the pan, sprinkle the mixed cheese topping. Then bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

And that's it. You now have one of our favorite meals on your dinner table. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do. 
As we get closer to the end of February, I'm getting more excited for what's ahead: gardening prep! See how I'm planning for the upcoming spring while dreading it all at the same time next week.

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