Often, I will just shove the extras into the fridge and plan on eating "Left Over Lunch" later in the week. And while all of this looks good on paper at the time, it rarely pans out and the pasta ends up being lost in the back of the fridge only to be discovered along side of the sauce in all of its fuzzy green glory many weeks later.
The solution = Spaghetti Pie (Possibly one of my first "Do Overs" as a young married gal.)
Here's what you need:
(Printable recipe here)
- Cooked spaghetti (about 4 ounces, but you can use a little more or less according to your leftover amount)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 Tablespoons of melted butter
- 1 1/2 to 2 cups spaghetti sauce (if the sauce has no meat, add some ground beef if you choose, that's up to you...you're in charge!)
- 1 cup of cottage cheese (or, ricotta cheese)
- 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese
**This is another one of those versatile dishes, you can add pepperoni, olives, etc.
Here's what to do:
Melt the butter in a pie plate.
Then to the pie plate add the cooked pasta.
When butter has cooled enough NOT to cook the eggs, add the eggs.Combine until the spaghetti is evenly coated with butter and eggs and loosely press into the pie plate.
(I use my hands to do that, gooey--but it works well.)Next, grab the cottage cheese or, as in this picture, the ricotta and spread it on top of the pasta.
Follow with the sauce ...
and the mozzarella and any other desired ingredient.
(Please note technique...it is important to stick out your tongue while placing the cheese.
This will also serve to hide some of your Kool Aid mustache!)
To bake: 350 for 20-25 minutes. Don't over bake the spaghetti pie or the noodles will dry out and be tough.
To freeze: Cover with plastic wrap and then a layer of foil. Make certain to add a label and the cooking instructions so that you: 1) don't cook the plastic--not pretty, or 2) have to stop your meal making momentum and send out a search team to look for the cooking instructions before you can pop it into the oven.
From frozen, bake at 350 for 25-35 minutes until cooked through. I like to insert a butter knife directly into the center to check for doneness. If you remove the knife and it is very hot to the touch, it's done. If not give it more time and check again in about 10 minutes or so. You can also set the dish out on the counter an hour or so before you want to bake it and let it defrost a bit.
Enjoy your spaghetti pie and that wonderful sense of accomplishment you must feel by NOT letting good food turn green!!