The end of October is upon us folks. As much as I am disturbed by that fact, The Secret Recipe Club is here to save the day. This month I was assigned to Colie’s Kitchen. At first I really wanted to be a kid in the kitchen and make her Mall Style Pretzel Dogs, but I then found myself torn between the Gnocchi with Spicy Tomato and Wine Sauce and Scooter’s Spaghetti. I hope your powers of observation figured out which one won the battle. I mean come on, it has cream cheese in it which is like peanut butter in a dessert to me = weakness.
While making this I had the pasta boiling, the beef browning and the vegetables cooking in the microwave all at the same time. They all had about 5 minutes of time to get going, so I prepared as much as I could in advance and then threw it all together at once to cut down on time in the kitchen. I think everyone can appreciate a little less time spent cooking and more time enjoying your efforts afterwards.
Not to my surprise, the cream cheese mixture was my favorite part. It added such a creamy deliciousness that I could not stop eating it (and made me think about making lasagna with cream cheese instead of ricotta). The original recipe said it serves 10 but there’s no way that was happening for me. Maybe if you served it with a side salad or veggies. Or maybe I just have the appetite of a 16 year old boy.
Serves about 8 alone or 10 when served with a side)
8 oz. uncooked spaghetti (I used elbow noodles)
1 pound ground beef
1 large can (26.5 oz.) spaghetti sauce
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 cup chopped green peppers
1/3 cup chopped onions
8 oz. reduced fat cream cheese, room temperature
2 Tbsp milk
Fresh grated Parmesan cheese, to taste
1 small can (3 oz.) French fried onions
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease an 9 x 13-inch baking dish and set aside.
- Cook pasta to al dente, drain and set aside.
- While the pasta cooks, brown ground beef in a large skillet. Drain excess grease. Add spaghetti sauce to skillet and heat on low while you prepare the rest.
- While the beef cooks, combine onions, peppers and butter in small glass bowl. Cover and microwave 3-4 minutes on high until soft.
- Add cream cheese and milk to vegetables and stir well.
- Assemble in the following order: half of that spaghetti sauce, pasta, cream cheese/vegetable mixture, remainder of the spaghetti sauce, Parmesan cheese (amount subject to your own taste)
- Bake for 25 minutes. Top with French Fried onion and continue baking 5 more minutes.
Source: Adapted slightly from Colie’s Kitchen.