Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Family eats left overs 5 nights in a row - survives with a cleaner refrigerator

New recipes are an adventure for me – for my family they are something to be wary of.
“What’s that?”
“It’s too creamy.”
“I want yellow noodles”
“I’m not hungry anymore.”
To be honest – my family is pretty much amazing in the mealtime department. Most everyone is kind and does not say mean things. Sometimes I’ll ask Bronwyn if she likes something, she’ll say, “it’s not my favorite, but it’s OK.” Hey, I’ll take that. Some people have a horrible time at the dinner table with their kids. They fight every day through dinner.
I made this pasta when my kids weren’t feeling their finest – and you know what? They ate it. You know what else? They ate it as left overs too. Nicholas ate it about 3 times as leftovers. Hey... don’t judge... just because we had one week with 5 nights of left overs, it happens. At least we were eating them.
This pasta recipe is a good one – I left out the cream cheese because of Mr. “Too Creamy” and really... it didn’t feel like it needed it.
I’m thankful for my champion kind eaters. As long as I remain kind to them and don’t make them eat zoodles – I like our current agreement.
Garlic Mozzarella Margherita Pasta
1 lb spaghetti or pasta of choice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 onion, chopped
6 Roma tomatoes, chopped divided
4-6 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups milk
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 tsp EACH dried oregano, dried basil, salt
1/4 tsp EACH pepper, red pepper flakes
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 oz. cream cheese, softetned
1/4 cup loosely packed basil, chopped
freshly grated Parmesan cheese
fresh basil, chiffonade

Cook pasta al dente according to package directions in generously salted water. Remove 1 cup pasta water before draining.
Melt butter in olive oil over medium-low heat in a large skillet. Increase heat to medium and add onions and HALF of the tomatoes and sauté for 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook an additional 30 seconds. Sprinkle in flour and cook while stirring for 2 minutes (it will be thick).
Turn heat to low then slowly whisk in chicken broth, then milk, stirring constantly until smooth. Turn heat to medium high and bring the sauce to a simmer. Stir in spices and continue to simmer until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally.
Reduce heat to low and stir in Parmesan cheese until melted, followed by mozzarella cheese until melted, followed by cream cheese until melted.
Stir in remaining tomatoes and fresh basil. Stir in pasta until well coated, adding additional reserved pasta water a little at a time if needed to reach desired consistency. Taste and season with additional salt, pepper and/or red pepper flakes to taste.
Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan Cheese and additional basil if desired.

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