Monday, August 22, 2016

Mini Meatball Casserole

When I'm interested in comfort food I will usually go for my Mom's Beefaroni.  Leave it to the one woman that I might consider leaving Mrs. BA for to provide me with an alternative. Via the Pioneer Woman.

Mini Meatball Pasta Bake
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Cook Time: 1 Hours
Servings: 12 Servings

  • 3/4 pounds Italian Sausage 
  • 3/4 pounds Ground Beef 
  • 1/2 cup Regular Oats 
  • 1 cup Grated Parmesan 
  • 1 whole Egg, Beaten 
  • 1/4 cup Minced Fresh Parsley 
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste 
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Diced 
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced 
  • 1 can (28 Ounce) Diced Tomatoes 
  • 1 can (8 Ounces) Tomato Paste 
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar 
  • 2 cups Hot Water 
  • 12 leaves Basil 
  • 12 ounces, weight Ziti Pasta, Cooked To Al Dente 
  • 16 ounces, weight Fresh Mozzarella, Cut Into Large Cubes 

In a bowl, mix together the sausage, beef, oats, 1/2 of the Parmesan, egg, half the parsley, and salt and pepper until well combined. Form into small meatballs (about 1/2 inch) and brown in batches in a skillet over medium heat. Remove the meatballs from the pan and drain.

Add the onions and garlic to the skillet and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the tomatoes with juice, tomato paste, salt and pepper, sugar, and water. Stir and bring to a simmer, then add in the meatballs and continue simmering for 20 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and allow it to cool. Stir in the basil once cool.

In a casserole dish, add half the pasta, half the mozzarella cubes, 1/4 cup Parmesan, and half the meatball sauce. Repeat with another layer, ending with the meatball sauce. Cover with foil and either refrigerate for up to 2 days, or bake in a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes. Serve piping hot!

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