Archive for the ‘Italian & Pasta’ Category

Italian Tomato Tortellini with Spinach & Artichokes in a Grana Padano Cream Sauce

Cheese filled tortellini nestled in a luscious Grana Padano cream sauce with spinach, artichoke hearts and the highest-quality, freshest, best-tasting tomatoes by Redpack Tomatoes.

This post is being sponsored by Redpack Tomatoes featuring their Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic and Oregano. All opinions of these ABSOLUTELY AMAZING products are mine.

Folks I literally have been having a field day working on this recipe and with Redpack Tomatoes. Trusting a brand, the quality of their product and the taste is extremely important not only to me personally but also to the food I prepare for my family. When it comes to Redpack Tomatoes I never have to worry as they truly create the best product out there. Epicurious, who we all know and love, voted their Whole peeled tomatoes as the “Best Canned Tomatoes”. Marrying into an Italian family being able to make a marinara and Sunday gravy like Nonna is a requirement to be accepted in the family. I, honestly, owe a lot of my amazing tomato based recipes to their tomato products.

Italian Tomato Tortellini with Spinach & Artichokes in a Grana Padano Cream Sauce

This recipe I’ve been making for decades as it’s one of our favorites. For me, it’s comfort food but fancy enough to wow your dinner guests. This recipe is one that I tend to serve family-style (i.e., a double batch) and straight out of the pan that sets in the middle of our dinner table. This is a dish that, when my nieces and nephews used to stay the weekend with me, I’d let them help me out in the kitchen. Nothing made me happier than seeing their little faces light up while we would make this.

For the Freshest, best-tasting tomatoes go with Redpack and Red Gold!

One Pot Cheesy Chili Beef Pasta

Make this easy one-pot meal for some serious deliciousness!  It’s cheesy, it’s beefy, it’s the Mac’ Daddy of one pot pasta dishes! Plus with it being only 1 dirty pot that means less time spent washing dishes and more YOU time!

So raise your hands, who out there are a fan of One-Pot meals? Yeah me too. It’s funny as most think this is a new concept, kind of like the latest rage of ‘sheet pan’ dinners. Um sorry but no, I can remember Mom and Grandma doing both of those things while I was wee little. And I’m old people, like crypt keeper old. HA!  This dish, yeah this was my Mom’s buuuuuuuut you know me, I have to Lori-fy it. What that means is remove the ginormous chunks of onions and nasty green peppers (god I hate them!) and give it more rich flavors.

This was something Dad called ‘Slop’. It honestly was a poor man’s meal – just some basic ingredients dumped into a pot, some spices and that was pretty much it. This was something Mom made quite often as it was a cheap meal but fed a lot. It was hearty and delicious. Well once I picked out the cucka chunks of veggies. LOL Mom always served this with her homemade white bread.  God my favorite meal with this was getting tons of sauce in my bowl, topping it with grated cheese and dipping warmed, buttered white bread in it to scoop it out.  Mmmm God I love bread…and carbs <insert thigh jiggle here> LOL

These days I’m finding that a good bit of my cooking is either pressure cooking or one pot/sheet pan meals. I’m in the midst of a HUGE upgrade project at work that has me pulling up to 100 hours a week (thank GOD I’m working from home) which leaves me little time for TKW (thank GOD you guys love me, are patient and understanding) and even less time to cook here. Yes there have been times when I’m like “honey can you just eat PB&J?”. Thankfully Mr. Fantabulous  is understanding and will even help out.

Between doing my day job, doing TKW, working on the house and life, there’s zero time for Lori. But I’m tough and I have an amazing support system. Plus I see the end of the tunnel for the work project and the flooring downstairs is about 60% done so soon I’ll be able to breath a little easier.

So much YUM! in one pot!

Italian Veggie Stuffed Zucchini Boats Starring Ragu Homestyle Thick & Hearty Pasta Sauce

Ah summer… the sun is shining, days seem longer and gardens are producing tons of fresh fruits and veggies.   There is nothing better than garden fresh veggies. Crisp peppers, corn on the cob, zucchini for days and vine ripened tomatoes.  However living in Pittsburgh we have all but a brief window of time where we can grow our own veggies like that.  Nothing is better than homemade pasta sauce with garden fresh garlic, herbs and those juicy tomatoes.  Well thankfully RAGÚ came out with their new Homestyle pasta sauces!  You can get garden fresh taste with that rich homestyle way just like Nonna!  So when the great folks from RAGÚ reached out to me to check out their new RAGÚ Homestyle pasta sauces I was ecstatic.  You see RAGÚ Homestyle pasta sauce is about tradition, family and amazing flavors.  So today I’m sharing with you my Italian Veggie Stuffed Zucchini Boats Starring Ragu Homestyle Thick & Hearty Pasta Sauce.  Get on the boat to YUMVILLE with this dish!

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This time around I decided to go with their Homestyle Thick & Hearty Roasted Garlic pasta sauce. Since this dish was meatless I really wanted to give the veggie filling tons of flavors.  This sauce was the perfect way to go! Rich, thick, bold and the roasted garlic flavor was amazing!

Don’t miss this boat ride to YUMVILLE!

Italian Zucchini Rustica – Pasta Pie

For me I tend to associate foods with memories.  I grew up in a house where Mom and Dad were always in the kitchen laughing, dancing, singing and whipping up something to feed us 6 kids.  Mom had her go-to dinner rituals.  Sundays were pot roast, Wednesday was spaghetti, Friday was pizza and Saturday was leftovers turned into something truly amazing. Since Mom wasn’t Italian she left the sauce up to the great folks from RAGÚ. Just the other day as I was blogging out a pot roast recipe and how amazing it smelled it immediately triggered a memory from when I was 8 years old.  I could vividly what I was doing, the fact that I got hurt jumping off the swing and how she pretty much flew down by my side before I could get the first tear down my cheek. As she consoled me and wrapped me in her arms the way only a mother could we walked up towards the house I could smell her Sunday pot roast.  Some 30+ years later as I stood in my kitchen smelling my pot roast I immediately got a smile on my face.

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I was making her dish, carrying on her traditions.  When I met Mr. Fantabulous I gained an amazing Italian family. Mama Fantabulous took me under her wing and shared with me their traditions of which a good many of them centered around foods. She shared with me their amazing pasta recipes and more importantly shared with me the stories of how these dishes came to be.  So when the great folks from RAGÚ reached out to me to check out their new RAGÚ Homestyle pasta sauces I was ecstatic.  You see RAGÚ Homestyle pasta sauce is about tradition, family and amazing flavors.  For me that’s the perfect combination to make great memories!

Make this recipe part of your family tradition!

Simmered in Tradition – Ragu Meatball Panini Dippers

Marrying into an Italian family, you learn a lot about tradition, family and dreams.  Often there is that patriarch of the family; that one person that essentially ‘started it all’. When the good folks from Ragu®  reached out to me they taught me their patriarch,  Assunta Cantisano. Assunta made the voyage from Italy to America with a little something extra up her sleeve, her family’s recipe for tomato sauce– a secret and sublime combination of vine-ripened tomatoes, fresh basil, fennel, garlic and ground pepper, meticulously writing down every detail and hiding it for safe passage. She must have known she was onto something when the neighbor’s raved about it. Then the neighbor’s neighbors. Word spread, and when people in Iowa started grabbing it off the shelves, well, the legend was off and running.

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Learn more about Assunta and a Giveaway!

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