Today, I am having a special guest post!!! My sister in law Lauren is sharing a very special family recipe and it just happens to be my husband’s favorite.  Take it away Lauren!
Baked Ziti
When Meagan asked me to do a guest blog post, I was excited about the opportunity to share a family recipe with her (and you, her loyal readers)! My mom’s  family, who was from New York originally, has a spaghetti sauce recipe that has been passed down for generations. Growing up, it was a family tradition to have baked ziti for Christmas.
Baked Ziti
 I fondly remember helping my mom cook the sauce all day in preparation for our Christmas meal. Definitely a day in the kitchen well-spent. Because of the amount of time this recipe takes to prepare, it’s not one that you can whip up last minute, but hopefully you will find that the extra time is worth the reward. (Tip: I prefer to make a large batch of sauce and freeze the leftovers for a delicious meal in half the time!)
From our family to yours,
Lauren

Baked Ziti

Ingredients:

28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
6 oz. can tomato paste
8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 tsp garlic
sweet basil to taste
oregano to taste
1 tsp sugar
salt to taste
2 cups water
1 onion, diced
1 lb. Italian sausage links
12 oz. package meatballs
1 box 16oz. ziti
8 oz. mozzarella, cherry balls

Directions:

In large pot or saucepan on low heat add the first nine ingredients. In another sauce pan add the onions with a little bit of olive oil and sauté them for 5-7 minutes or until tender. Then add them to the larger pot.

Add the sausage and meatballs (only if they are uncooked) to the same pan that you just cooked the onions in and cook until they are lightly brown. Then add to the sauce mixture. The meat and sauce will cook 5-6 hours on low heat, stirring every 30 minutes to an hour.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Cook ziti according to package instructions and then drain. Coat a large casserole dish with cooking spray and then lay 1/2 of the noodles, 1/2 meat sauce, and half of the mozzarella. Then layer one more time then stir everything up. Bake covered in the oven 30-40 minutes.

Sprinkle with parmesan right before serving.

All images and text ©.


Baked Ziti

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