You may have noticed a trend in my cooking...lots of pasta, red sauce and fresh ingredients (where possible). It's because these foods are comforting to me. Strange, I know. They come warm out of the skillet or the oven (in the case of the dish below), they taste great, they're filling and they're healthy. I can't help it...knowing I'm responsible for feeding the four men in my house leads me to spend a lot of time trying to find healthy, tasty foods.
Some of my garden plants this summer were teeny, tiny compared with normal growth. My zucchini plant was one and it didn't produce any harvestable veggies until the very end of the season. After sauteing a couple and a few chilly nights, it was time for some comfort food!
Pasta Bake with Zuccini
1 16 oz. box of Ziti, Mostociolli or Penne (I only use about 3/4 a box)
1 lb. ground beef
Red Sauce (in a hurry, Newman's Own Basil and Tomato is delish)
4-6 oz. Mozzarella Cheese
1/4 cup Parmesian Cheese
A Zucchini, chopped (size based on how well your family likes zucchini, my theory is smaller is less noticeable...)
Start your pasta a-cookin'. As you can see I throw in whatever I've got.
While the pasta is cooking, brown the ground beef, pour off the grease and add your tomato sauce. Spice her up if you like. Add your zucchini for a minute or two, just to soften. The zucchini will finish cooking in the oven.
Mix the sauce together with your noodles.
Dump the whole she-bang into a casserole dish.
Shread some mozzeralla over the top and sprinkle with Parmesian. Cover with foil and pop in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until slightly bubbly and serve. Yummmmm-O.
Now that's comfort food!