Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Family Dinner

A few years ago my great-aunt (Christine, but dubbed "Eenie" by me as a baby) moved about an hour away to an assisted-living facility close to her son. We don't see her now nearly as often as we used to, so when she comes to stay with my Nana (which she does every few months or so) I try to take advantage of the opportunity and get together with her and Nana. Last night I had the both over for dinner and whipped up a Beef Penne Pasta Casserole. I've had this recipe for years - in fact it was one of the first real meals I ever cooked when Joe and I first moved in together. The recipe is from meals.com. It's easy, makes a ton of food so it's great for company and tastes great. It also happens to be one of Joe's favorite meals. I served it with salad and biscuits and thoroughly enjoyed the meal and Nana and Eenie's company.

Beef Penne Pasta Casserole

1 pound dried penne pasta, prepared according to package directions
8 ounces lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
2 cups water
2 cans (6 ounces each) Italian tomato paste
1/3 cup red wine or water
1 tablespoon beef flavored bouillon
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese (I use mozzarella)

PREHEAT oven to 350° F.
COOK beef and onion in large saucepan, stirring occasionally, until beef is no longer pink. Add water, tomato paste, wine and bouillon; cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes or until flavors are blended.LAYER ingredients as follows in ungreased 13 x 9-inch baking dish: 1/2 pasta, 1/2 sauce and 1/2 cheese. Repeat layers; cover.BAKE for 20 to 25 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted. Season with salt.

FOR FREEZE AHEAD:PREPARE as above; do not bake. Cover; freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in refrigerator. PREHEAT oven to 350° F. BAKE for 45 to 55 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted. Season with salt.
Serving Size: 6


Amy said...

What a wonderful story. I am sure Nana and Eenie loved it! Looks good, I am saving this recipe for sure!

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