Sunday, March 31, 2013

Do You Remember What My Favorite Kind of Comfort Food Is?

If you guessed pasta, you are right! Ding, ding, ding! You have won a prize...two new pasta recipes!

Above: Italian Spaghetti and Meatballs 

Above: Pasta with Tomato Sauce and Lemony Beans

Italian Spaghetti and Meatballs


2 cans (28 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (12 ounces) tomato paste
1 1/2 cups water, divided
3 tablespoons grated onion
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
1 teaspoon minced garlic, divided
3/4 teaspoon pepper, divided
6 slices day-old bread, torn into pieces
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 pound ground beef
Hot cooked spaghetti
Additional Parmesan cheese, optional


In a Dutch oven, combine the tomatoes, tomato paste, 1 cup water, onion, sugar, oregano, bay leaf, and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt, garlic, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 1 1/4 hours.

Meanwhile, soak bread in remaining water. Squeeze out excess moisture. In a large bowl, combine the bread, eggs, Parmesan cheese, parsley, and remaining salt, garlic, and pepper. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into thirty-six 1 1/2 inch meatballs.

Place meatballs on a rack in a shallow baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees F. for 20 minutes or until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to spaghetti sauce. Simmer, uncovered, until heated through, stirring occasionally. Discard bay leaf. Serve with spaghetti with additional Parmesan if desired.

Yield: 6 servings.

Nutrition information: 1 2/3 cups (calculated without spaghetti and additional cheese) equals 373 calories, 13 g fat, 123 mg cholesterol, 1,201 mg sodium, 39 g carbohydrate, 7 g fiber, 26 g protein.

Source: Taste of Home recipe, found here.

Notes: At first, I thought, "This is good...but is it good enough to blog? Or should I keep looking for another recipe?" Then I had some leftovers the next day, and the next...let me tell you, this is good stuff! Definitely worth it!

Pasta with Tomato Sauce and Lemony Beans


Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 pound medium shell pasta
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 small yellow onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced, divided
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
1 can (15.5 ounces) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 teaspoon zest, plus 2 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon
1/4 cup rough chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup grated Parmesan


In a large pot of salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions. Reserve 1 cup pasta water. Drain and return to pasta pot. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepot, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium. Add onion and half the garlic and saute. Add pepper flakes and bay leaf and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add tomato and juices, 3/4 cup pasta water, and salt and pepper. Bring to a rapid simmer and cook until tomato pieces begin to break down and liquid thickens, about 15 minutes. Discard bay leaf, and, using a hand blender or a food processor, blend tomato mixture until coarsely pureed. Toss with pasta to coat.

In a small skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium. Add remaining garlic and cook until soft and fragrant, 1 minute. Add beans and remaining 1/4 cup pasta water and cook until beans are heated through. Stir in lemon zest and juice, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Divide pasta among bowls, top with warm bean mixture, and sprinkle with Parmesan.

Source: Martha Stewart Everyday Food blog recipe. Found here.

Notes: Holy cow. This was so good. So easy to make! The lemony bean mixture adds such an amazing pop of flavor and it complements the pasta with tomato sauce quite well. Delicious! More please!

Above: Yum! Don't mind if I do!


  1. Pasta and beans? Really? I don't know.....

  2. You HAVE to try this sometime Mom. It was soooo good (both of them).