This is a crazy easy dish to make and tastes pretty damn fine for having so few ingredients.The only oddball thing is that you will need to search out some tuna packed in oil.

1 12 ox box whole-wheat rotini or penne
2 cans oil-packed tuna
2 Tbs whole grain, spicy mustard
2-3 cups frozen veggies, thawed (I used peas and corn)



Cook the pasta until al dente. When done, drain the pasta and reserve about a cup or so of the pasta water.

While the pasta cooks, drain the tuna’s packing oil into a small skillet and flake the fish into pieces.  Add the mustard to the oil and heat over med-low heat.

After draining pasta return to the pot and add the veggies and the oil and mustard mixture.  Add some of the reserved pasta water and cook over medium heat until the mustard oil and pasta water form a sauce that begins to cling to the pasta.  Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Posted by Mike on Thursday, September 15, 2011 at 06:32 PM
Filed in: EntreesFish & SeafoodPasta • ◊ Permalink
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It’s Bolognese in Italian and Bolognaise in French and on my plate it’s spaghetti with a meat sauce.
“True” Bolognaise sauces only have a small amount of tomato in them and this one is loaded so call it what you may, it’s still delicious!
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 small onion chopped
2 cloves garlic diced or minced
1 lb ground beef
1 15oz can tomatoes chopped
4 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
13 oz spaghetti

Heat the oil in a large pan and cook the onion and garlic until the onion is tender (about 2 minutes). Add in the ground beef and cook over high heat until the beef is well browned. Use a fork to break up any large pieces.

Add the undrained can of tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano and basil. Bring all of this to a boil then lower the heat to low and simmer uncovered for about 1 hour and 30 minutes or until the sauce has thickened.

Serve over cooked spaghetti with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese on top.

This will serve about 4 people or in my case (since the husband doesn’t LIKE spaghetti meat sauce) about 5 days worth. Mmmmmm

image Notes:
- Usually I use about 4 to 6 large fresh tomatoes and a cup of water but the commissary didn’t have ANY tomatoes that looked nice so I opted for the canned tomatoes this time.
- Also, you can make this sauce up to 2 days in advance and just reheat it and serve over the pasta when it’s dinner time.
- I also add in a teaspoon of kosher salt because I really like salted food and in my opinion kosher salt is the only salt to cook with.

Posted by rachel on Wednesday, April 21, 2010 at 07:08 PM
Filed in: PastaSauces & Gravy • ◊ Permalink
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imageMany moons ago when blogs were still young, I frequented the blog of a nice guy from Pennsylvania, btezra. His blog has gone the way of the dinosaurs (so don't bother clicking) but this recipe, which he originally posted there and graciously permitted me to copy, has survived. I've done a couple of things differently but only in the prep. The ingredients are the same.

This lasagne is whatchacall a special occasion dish. It's labour intensive and makes for lots of dirty dishes. I make this maybe once or twice a year but trust me, once you've tried it, you'll find it's worth the trouble. If you're especially industrious, double the recipe and freeze the second pan for a quick heat-and-eat meal when you're busy. It will take a good 3 months worth of freezing with no problem. And seriously? This is damned good. Really good. Really, really good. It's also very rich and very filling. Be prepared to need a nap after dinner. You can, of course, substitute all that low-fat ricotta, milk, etc., but why would you want to? I mean, it's not like you'd eat this everyday.


1/2 C butter + 2 TBSP
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 C flour
2 C milk
2 C chicken broth
2 C (8 oz bag) shredded mozzarella - divided
1/2 C parmesan cheese
1/2 C onion, diced
1-2 tsp Italian seasoning, to taste
1 packet G. Washington Golden
1 tsp Nature's Seasons
1 C cottage cheese
1 C ricotta
1 egg
2 boneless chicken breast
1 pkg fresh or frozen spinach **Important - see footnote
9 lasagne noodlesimage


Cook lasagne noodles, dry and lay on waxed paper until ready to use. Slice chicken breast (easier if partially frozen) from the short side about 1/4" thick. Cutting from the short side creates little medallions. In a non-stick frying pan, melt 2 TBSP butter. Add sliced chicken and cook through, letting it brown a little. Remove to a plate and set aside. To the same pan, add your washed and dryed spinach. Slap a cover on it, let it cook for 2 minutes then turn off the heat leaving the lid on.

In a 3 or 4 qt saucepan, melt the butter. Add garlic and onion and cook until translucent. Whisk in flour and all the seasonings. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in milk and broth and bring to a boil. If the sauce is too thick, add more broth. Remove from heat, sauce will thicken as it sits so you might have to add a bit more broth. It should be thick and spreadable.

imageCombine cottage cheese, ricotta, 1 C mozzarella and egg. Mix well.
Spread about 1/3 of the sauce in 13 x 9 pan, top with noodles. Spread 1/2 of the cheese mixture over noodles. Repeat sauce/noodle/cheese mixture. Top with chicken, then spinach. Add last layer of noodles and then remaining sauce. Cook covered @ 350° for 1 hour. Uncover and sprinkle the rest of the mozzarella cheese on top. Bake until cheese is melted and bubbly.

**After the spinach has wilted in the pan and cooled, put it in a triple layer of papertowels and squeeze out all of the excess moisture. You do not want the spinach to be wet. If you use frozen spinach, thawed it out first then squeeze out the excess moisture. Even though the original recipe calls for 1 bag, I always use two. I like the extra spinach.

Posted by Donna on Thursday, February 18, 2010 at 08:30 PM
Filed in: CasserolesEntreesPastaPoultry • ◊ Permalink
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Here’s a quick and easy dish to help use up the leftover Thanksgiving turkey.  It’s tasty and definitely qualifies for comfort food status.  image


1/3 C butter + 2TBSP
1/3 C flour
1 stalk celery
1/2 a small onion
1 packet G. Washington Golden
1-1/2 C turkey broth (You did boil your turkey carcass for broth and stock, right?) or 1 can chicken broth
1/2 C half & half
4 oz fresh mushrooms
2 handfuls frozen broccoli florets
1-1/2 C cooked turkey
1/4 meat leftover pan drippings
salt & pepper or Nature’s Seasons, parsely
1/2 to 3/4 of a bag cooked wide egg noodles

imageMelt 2 TBSP butter in a frying pan.  Add sliced fresh mushrooms and cook until brown and all liquid has been given off.  Melt 1/3 C butter in 3 or 4 quart pot.  Cook celery and onion until tender.  Add flour, G Washington and Nature’s Seasons all at once.  Stir well.  Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Slowly add about 1/2 the broth while whisking briskly.  Add the half & half and simmer for 5 minutes or so.  Add more broth as necessary to make a creamy sauce.  Add meat, mushrooms and broccoli to sauce.  Add noodles until you like the consistency of pasta to sauce.  Re-season to taste.  Add parsley.

I always save the pan drippings from the turkey that I don’t use for gravy.  It will form a kind of jelly consistency.  This stuff is full of yum.  Seriously.  It adds so much flavour.  Save this and add it by tablespoonfuls to this sauce and other turkey or even chicken based dishes.  Good stuff.


Oh and the pan I cooked this in?  My new best friend.  I do not kid.  I love this pan.  You can check it out on the sidebar in the Amazon ad.  You want one.  Really.

Posted by Donna on Thursday, December 03, 2009 at 09:10 PM
Filed in: EntreesPastaPoultry • ◊ Permalink
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This is a really simple Alfredo sauce punched up with sliced mushrooms and diced, browned pepperoni.  For only having seven ingredients it’s really tasty.

Fettucine with pepperoni

1 lb fettucine
1/4 lb pepperoni, sliced or not
1 can sliced mushrooms, drained well
2 Tbs unsalted butter
3/4 cup half & half
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1 Tbs parsley

Cook fettucine.

Dice pepperoni and cook over medium heat until browned.  Remove from pan, drain and set aside.  Pour off rendered fat.  Melt butter in saucepan and add mushrooms and sautee for about 5 minutes or more.  Stir in half & half and parmesan and heat through.  Return pepperoni to the sauce.  When heated up, add sauce to noodles and toss to coat.

Serves four

Posted by Mike on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 at 03:08 PM
Filed in: EntreesPasta • ◊ Permalink
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2 pounds Ripe, juicy, unpeeled tomatoes
2 Tbs Olive oil
1 Cup Chopped onion
2 tsp Minced garlic (add more or less depending on how you like garlic
1/4 tsp Red pepper flakes
1 Pound Pasta (small rigatoni, or penne would work best)
3/4 Cup Grated Parmesan spring for the good stuff, not the crap in the green can
2 Tbsp Unsalted butter
4 Cups Field greens or whatever non-iceberg lettuce you have on hand

ingredients Put on your cooking music (I chose Brian Wilson’s Smile because great summertime food deserves great summertime music) and pour yourself a beer.  Or a glass of wine. Or other drink of choice.

Cut the tomatoes in half horizontally. give each half a firm squeeze to get rid of as many seeds as possible. If you’re really anti-seed, you can pick out the pulpy, seedy portion with a thin knife, but you still won’t get them all anyway.  Chop into medium sized (3/4 inch) hunks and put in a large bowl.

Heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until translucent and a little soft (about 4 or 5 minutes). Add the garlic and saute another minute or two.  Add the tomatoes and any liquid in the bowl, about 3/4 tsp salt, and the red pepper flakes.

almost done

Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the tomatoes have schlubbed down and most of the liquid has evaporated.  You’re shooting for a thick, but not paste-like, texture that’ll stick to the pasta. This is what mine looked like about 5 minutes before it was done. Figure on it taking about 12-20 minutes depending on how erratic your stove is.  Give it a taste and add more salt if you think it needs it.

In the meantime, cook your pasta. pasta Notice how, if you’re using rigatoni, the noodles arrange themselves upright like little chimneys at the bottom of the pot even at a high boil. It reminds me of the tube sponges I saw back in my scuba diving days. Drain and return it to the pot. Add 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese and the butter and stir until its nice and melty. Add the tomato sauce and greens and stir until they begin to wilt. 

Divide into pasta bowls, sprinkle with reserved cheese and enjoy.  Serves four.

Juicy tomatoes are a must. If they aren’t ripe and juicy, you’ll probably have to add water when making the sauce. I used an heirloom variety from my garden called Rutgers, but try a farmers market or the organic section in a pinch.  Not peeling the tomatoes also adds a to the texture of the sauce.

The sauce can be made a day or two ahead and warmed up in a pan before adding to the pasta.  It’s tasty enough that you’ll want to eat it with a spoon though.

Posted by Mike on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 at 12:52 PM
Filed in: Pasta • ◊ Permalink
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16 oz uncooked fettucine (if you can find whole wheat, even better)
1 1/2 cups fat-free half and half cream
8 oz reduced fat cream cheese, cubed
1 1/2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon salt, optional
1 teaspon ground white pepper

Cook fettucine according to package directions. Meanwhile in a saucepan combine the half and half and the cream cheese. Cook on medium heat until thickened and bubbly, stirring occasionally. Stir in the Parmesan cheese until smooth. Stir in the salt, if desired, and the pepper. Drain fettucine, toss with sauce. Serves 8.


This recipe comes from the current issue of the magazine Cooking for Two and I've adapted it to be cooked on the stovetop instead of in the microwave, be lighter, and to make 8 servings. The original recipe was for a single serving. It is easy to cut in half if need be. I posted this on my blog, but Donna told me I should come over and post it here, too.

1 serving equals:
368 calories
11 grams of fat (6 grams saturated fat)
28 mg cholesterol
404 mg sodium
49 g carboyhydrates
2 g fiber
18 g protein.
Posted by Donna on Sunday, May 08, 2005 at 12:48 AM
Filed in: Pasta • ◊ Permalink

1 box (16 oz) elbow macaroni
3 cans stewed tomatoes.
1 tsp garlic salt.
salt and pepper to taste

Cook macaroni according to package directions. Do not overcook. Drain. Rinse.

Add stewed tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper.

Bring to boil on medium-high heat. Reduce and simmer on low for 10 minutes. Stir often. Serve hot.

Note: You can add 1 lb cooked hamburger, drained, to this dish and it becomes an entree.
Posted by Donna on Wednesday, March 03, 2004 at 11:45 PM
Filed in: Pasta • ◊ Permalink

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