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Old 10-25-2012, 02:06 PM   #1
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In need of a new pasta meal to round out next week's menu

For ease of menu planning, I rotate my menu so that I have one of each of these: turkey, fish, beef, pork, pizza, chicken, and pasta.

I need a new pasta dish for next week's menu.

I prefer that it be vegetarian, because of course we have plenty of meat in the menu for the week anyway.

I would like it to have zucchini, because I have one sitting in the fridge that needs to be used. I have mushrooms to use too.

I need it to be thrifty-therefore no funky or "one off" type of ingredients that are out of season or expensively imported or aren't likely to be used again.

I also need it to be pretty easy to prep-newborn in the house, plus 3 other kids and DH will be at work all day.

DH and DD1 are both trying to drop some weight so something that's good for that is good too.

Ideas?

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Old 10-25-2012, 02:25 PM   #2
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I do zucchini, mushrooms and peas in an Alfredo with or without chicken, ham or smoked salmon quite a bit. the veggie version is really nice and light and i do homemade Alfredo with butter, flour, milk and parmesan.
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Old 10-25-2012, 02:33 PM   #3
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Re: In need of a new pasta meal to round out next week's menu

I agree with pp! Veggie alfredo is super yummy!

Here is the recipe I use...from Best Bites. I do not care for the melting of the low-fat so I but the 1/3 less fat. I also think the parmesan you use makes a difference too! The better cheese can be a smidge pricier (I buy the block that I shred myself) but it makes all the difference!

2 C low-fat milk
1/3 C (3 oz) low fat cream cheese
2-3 T flour
1 t salt
1 T butter
3 garlic cloves
1 C grated Parmesan cheese
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Old 10-25-2012, 02:35 PM   #4
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Re: In need of a new pasta meal to round out next week's menu

You could also do a veggie pasta bake with a tomato (spaghetti) sauce. I toss the veggis and pasta with sauce then top with some cheese and bake it for 15-20 minutes to heat through and melt the cheese. Yummy!
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Old 10-26-2012, 08:24 AM   #5
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We do baked spaghetti: half a box of Barilla Plus thin spaghetti + approx. 3 cups of spaghetti sauce (homemade or store-bought; add the mushrooms, chopped and sauteed, and the zucchini, shredded). Place in a casserole dish and cover with up to 8 oz. shredded cheese (Italian-blend, Cheddar, whatever). Bake until hot and the cheese is melted. This will serve 3 adults.
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Old 10-26-2012, 11:37 AM   #6
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Re: In need of a new pasta meal to round out next week's menu

One of my favorites- tossed ravioli.

ravioli or tortellini- cheese or meat, doesn't matter
diced tomatoes- canned or fresh
1 or 2 minced garlic cloves
as much sliced onion as you like
sliced zuc
sliced mushrooms
parm cheese

Cook pasta. Mean while oaute onion, garlic and mushrooms in olive oil until soft and mushrooms give off liquid. add tomatoes and saute a few mins (if using fresh) then add zuc (if using canned tomatoes add with zuc and with juice). Then saute until zuc is where you like it. Toss with pasta. Sprinkle with cheese.

If its too dry for your kids just top it with some spaghetti sauce. I love this, but dh doesn't like zuc or tomatoes so I don't get to make it often. You could also use sauce in place of the tomatoes or with the tomatoes.
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Old 10-26-2012, 12:38 PM   #7
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Re: In need of a new pasta meal to round out next week's menu

I make Mac&Cheese with veggies, very tasty. Just be sure to drain the mushrooms and zuchinni well before adding to the sauce or you'll have watery sauce.

1 lb. elbow macaroni
4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 qt. cold milk (4 c.)
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 c. shredded cheese - I use whatever we have, parmesan, swiss, cheddar...mixing is good.
2 med.-size zucchini (3/4 lb.), trimmed & diced
1.5 c. diced mushrooms
1 lg. onion, diced

Cook macaroni as directed, drain. In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, then add flour while whisking constantly. Whisk for a few minutes till mixture smells nutty, then slowly add milk, stirring constantly. When mixture is smooth, nutmeg, and slowly mix in cheese. Meanwhile, saute vegetables and salt in a dash of olive oil until just softened. Drain and mix with pasta in large casserole dish. Pour sauce over and stir to combine. Bake 30 min at 350 until browned and bubbly.
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Old 10-26-2012, 12:39 PM   #8
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Re: In need of a new pasta meal to round out next week's menu

I make Mac&Cheese with veggies, very tasty. Just be sure to drain the mushrooms and zuchinni well before adding to the sauce or you'll have watery sauce.

1 lb. elbow macaroni
4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 qt. cold milk (4 c.)
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 c. shredded cheese - I use whatever we have, parmesan, swiss, cheddar...mixing is good.
2 med.-size zucchini (3/4 lb.), trimmed & diced
1.5 c. diced mushrooms
1 lg. onion, diced

Cook macaroni as directed, drain. In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, then add flour while whisking constantly. Whisk for a few minutes till mixture smells nutty, then slowly add milk, stirring constantly. When mixture is smooth, nutmeg, and slowly mix in cheese. Meanwhile, saute vegetables and salt in a dash of olive oil until just softened. Drain and mix with pasta in large casserole dish. Pour sauce over and stir to combine. Bake 30 min at 350 until browned and bubbly.
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Old 10-27-2012, 11:16 AM   #9
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We like salad of zucchini "ribbons "- use a peeler to make super thin slices then cut into ribbons. Its good wirh just some evoo lemon and parm but i think mixed in with linguini or something would be great too. No need to cook it.
I would make linguini, drop zucchini in the pot like the last 2 mins, then drain and toss with butter, evoo, parm, pepper... Maybe sone basil or parsley if you have it. Super easy and potentially one-pot!
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Old 10-27-2012, 11:50 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DottieHarley
We like salad of zucchini "ribbons "- use a peeler to make super thin slices then cut into ribbons. Its good wirh just some evoo lemon and parm but i think mixed in with linguini or something would be great too. No need to cook it.
I would make linguini, drop zucchini in the pot like the last 2 mins, then drain and toss with butter, evoo, parm, pepper... Maybe sone basil or parsley if you have it. Super easy and potentially one-pot!
I make lasagna like this sometimes instead of using noodles Yummy!!
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