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Recipe: 20 Minute Acini de Pepe with Broccoli & Shrimp

Recipe: 20 Minute Acini de Pepe with Broccoli & Shrimp

Ingredients

1 lb Acini de Pepe pasta
2 tbsp olive oil
½ red onion, finely chopped
3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
¼ cup dry white wine
1 lb frozen, cooked shrimp (26/30) no tails
2 broccoli crowns, florets cut into small pieces
salt
hot pepper flakes
serve with parmesan cheese

Directions

Cook Acini de Pepe to package directions. Drain and set aside, reserving 1 cup of cooking liquid.

While the pasta is cooking, add the olive oil to a large skillet and sauté the onions a few minutes over medium heat until soft and fragrant. Add the garlic, cook another minute.

Add the wine, stir, then the broccoli. Cook a few minutes until the broccoli turns bright green, add a splash or two of pasta cooking liquid to speed things up. Add the shrimp, stir all the ingredients together. Season to taste with salt and pepper flakes. Cook for a few minutes until shrimp is hot.

Add the cooked Acini de Pepe to the skillet and toss with the shrimp mixture. Cook until everything is hot. Serve with parmesan cheese.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Orecchiette with Sausage & Spinach

Recipe: Orecchiette with Sausage & Spinach

Ingredients

1 lb Orecchiette, cooked to package directions
1 lb ground sausage (breakfast, sweet Italian or Andouille)
1 tbsp olive oil
½ chopped red onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups baby spinach
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
splash dry white wine
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 oz high quality crumbled feta (I prefer sheep feta for it’s deep, tangy flavor)

Directions

Cook the pasta to package directions in plenty of salted water. Drain and return the pasta back to the cooking pot, set on the counter.

While the pasta is cooking make the sauce. Heat a 10 inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground sausage and break apart with a wooden spoon. Cook until no pink remains, about 7-10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the sausage to a bowl.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the olive oil and onions to the skillet. No need to rinse the skillet, leave a small amount of sausage grease in the pan to enhance the flavor of the onions. Cook the onions for about 5 minutes, until fragrant and translucent. Add the garlic at the last 30 seconds of cooking the onion. Add the spinach, wine and lemon juice to the skillet. Cook a few minutes until the spinach is wilted. Transfer the sausage back into the skillet. Cook until all is hot, season to taste with salt and pepper.

Transfer the sausage mixture into the pasta and toss to combine. Transfer to a large serving dish and top with crumbled feta cheese.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Vegan Minestrone Soup

Recipe: Vegan Minestrone Soup

Ingredients

3 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
¼ cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 cup chopped zucchini
1 cup chopped sweet potato
2 cups chopped brussels sprouts
1 14 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
6 cups low sodium vegetable broth
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 15 ounce can Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 tbsp dry white wine
1 tbsp chopped italian parsley
2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
7 oz orzo or small pasta, cooked to package directions

Directions

Cook pasta to package directions, drain and set aside.

In a large soup pot or Dutch oven heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, celery, carrots, zucchini, sweet potato and Brussels sprouts. Cook 6-8 minutes (until fragrant and softened) stirring occasionally so veggies don’t stick to the pot.

Add in the broth, diced tomatoes, wine and vinegar. Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. In the last few minutes stir in the beans, rosemary and parsley.

Place some pasta in each bowl and ladle soup into bowls.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Recipe: Quick Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

1 ½ lbs ripe tomatoes
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp sugar
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ lb whole wheat spaghetti
¼ cup chopped fresh basil, plus more for topping
freshly grated parmesan for serving

Directions

While the pasta is cooking. Roughly chop 2/3 of the tomatoes. Over a large bowl, grate the rest of the tomatoes using the large holes of a box grater.

Combine the chopped and grated tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, sugar, garlic and pepper in the large bowl. Let rest 10 minutes for the flavors to combine.

Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid. Immediately place the pasta back into the pasta pot.

Add the tomato sauce into the pasta with the 1/4 cup reserved cooking liquid. Cook over medium heat until hot and the cooking liquid is absorbed. Mix in the 1/4 cup chopped basil during the last minute.

Serve immediately with more basil and parmesan cheese.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta Salad

Recipe: Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta Salad

Ingredients

12 oz Cavatappi, macaroni or bow tie pastacook to package directions, rinse in cold water when done
1 (8.4 oz) pitted Kalamata olives, chopped
1 (8 oz) jar sun-dried tomatoes in oil, no need to drain the oil
1 cup chopped red onion
1 yellow or red bell pepper, chopped
2 cups baby spinach
2 tbsp freshly chopped basil
2 tbsp freshly chopped Italian parsley
5 oz shaved parmesan cheese
Champagne Vinaigrette
cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup Champagne vinegar
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp dried oregano
½ tsp ground black pepper
1 pinch granulated sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Cook pasta to package directions. Drain and toss with cold water. Set aside.

Whisk together the vinaigrette ingredients.

Toss everything together in a very large serving bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Southwest Shrimp and Chorizo Pasta

Recipe: Southwest Shrimp and Chorizo Pasta

Ingredients

1 lb cleaned and deveined shrimp, 45 count
8 oz linguini
8 oz ground chorizo sausage
2 tbsp unsalted butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups 1/2 each yellow, red & orange bell peppers, diced
olive oil
chopped chives

Directions

Cook pasta to package directions. Rinse & toss with olive oil.

Cook chorizo in a large saucepan until cooked through, chop it up with a spatula. Remove Chorizo from pan.
Leave chorizo oil in pan, melt butter. Add peppers & garlic, Saute over medium high heat until softened, slightly browned & fragrant about 5 minutes.

Toss shrimp with southwest seasoning. Add shrimp to pan. Cook another 5 minutes. Add chorizo & stir. Add pasta into pan. Toss well & serve hot. Top with chives.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Shrimp Scampi with Linguine

Recipe: Shrimp Scampi with Linguine

Ingredients

1 lb linguine, cooked to package directions
1 lb large shrimp, cleaned, peeled (leaving tails) and slightly butterflied
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
½ cup dry white wine
¼ fl oz olive oil
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 pinch red pepper (or more to taste)
a few pinches salt and pepper
3 tbsp unsalted , divided

Directions

Clean and peel the shrimp. Make the marinade. Combine the onion, garlic, olive oil, wine, lemon juice, parsley and seasonings in a large bowl. Place the shrimp in the bowl and marinate for 20-30 minutes.

While the shrimp is marinating. Cook pasta to package directions. Toss with olive oil.

Preheat the flat top grill or skillet on medium high. Melt 1 tbsp of the butter on the grill then place the shrimp and marinade on top. Cook for 2 minutes then flip the shrimp and cook for another minute or until cooked through. Toss with the rest of the butter.

Serve on top of the linguine. Top with more parsley.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Very Veggie Lasagna

Recipe: Very Veggie Lasagna

Ingredients

1 lb brown rice lasagna pasta
1 (10 oz) package frozen, chopped spinach
1 (16 oz) container 4% milkfat cottage cheese
1 (15 oz) container ricotta cheese (non fat or whole milk)
2 tbsp olive oil
½ yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 yellow zucchini, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
1 green zucchini, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
1 bell pepper (any color)
25 oz whole white mushrooms, sliced
1 32 oz jar your favorite tomato sauce
Kosher salt & pepper
1 chopped fresh Italian parsley, divided
2 cups shredded mozzarela and cheddar cheese

Directions

Cook pasta to package directions. Drain then rinse in cold water.

Thaw the spinach in the microwave. Squeeze out excess water and place in a large bowl. Mix with the ricotta and cottage cheese. Season with some salt and pepper.

Add olive oil to a large skillet. Sauté the onions and garlic over medium heat for 3 minutes. Add the zucchini and bell peppers. Cook for 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms, cook for 5 minutes or until the veggies soften. Mix the veggies as they cook. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.

Stir the tomato sauce into the skillet and 1/4 cup parsley. Bring to a boil then simmer for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375˚ Fahrenheit with the rack in the middle.

Start with a thin layer of sauce in a 9X13 inch casserole baking dish. Add a layer of cooked lasagna noodles. On top of the pasta add a layer of the ricotta/cottage cheese mixture, then a layer of sauce and the noodles again. Continue layering finishing with a layer of the pasta then finally the sauce. Sprinkle the mozzarella and cheddar cheese over the sauce.

Bake the lasagna for 35 minutes then broil on low for 5 minutes, or until cheese is golden brown. Top with 1/4 cup chopped parsley. Serve while hot.

~ Marla Meridith

One-Pot Creamy Broccoli Pasta

One-Pot Creamy Broccoli Pasta

Ingredients

12 oz spaghetti or linguinie
½ cup chopped red onion
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 cups bite sized pieces broccoli florets
2 cups vegetable broth
1 ¼ cups whole milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Kosher salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste
Toppings
chopped fresh Italian parsley
sliced green onion

Directions

Heat the oil over medium heat in a 12 inch cast iron cast iron skillet.

Sauté the onion for 5 minutes, until soft and fragrant. Add the garlic. Cook 2 minutes. Mix in the lemon juice.

Add the broth, milk and broccoli. Bring to a boil. Add the pasta making sure it’s all submerged in the cooking liquid.

Cover the skillet and simmer the pasta for 8 minutes. Remove the lid, stir and continue to cook 8-10 minutes or until the pasta is done to your liking. Mix in the cheddar cheese in the last two minutes of cooking. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Top with parsley and green onion. Serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick & Easy Spaghetti and Meatballs

Recipe: Quick & Easy Spaghetti and Meatballs

Ingredients

1 lb spaghetti or any pasta
1 lb ground beef
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp ground black pepper
½ tsp Kosher salt
2 tsp dried basil
24 fl oz (1 jar) canned tomato sauce
grated or shaved parmesan cheese for topping

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Line a baking tray with tin foil.

Place the ground beef in a large bowl.
Season with the garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper salt and basil. With clean hands combine well.

Roll into 1 inch meatballs. Place the meatballs onto the lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes.

While the meatballs are baking, cook the pasta to package directions.
Drain the pasta when it’s done cooking.

Heat the sauce in a skillet. Season to taste with the garlic powder, onion powder etc. if you want it to have more profound flavors.

Top the cooked pasta with the sauce, meatballs and some Parmesan cheese.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Pantry-Only Tex Mex Mac ‘n Cheese

Recipe: Pantry-Only Tex Mex Mac ‘n Cheese

Ingredients

10 oz macaroni, rotini or fusilli
salt for pasta water
16.25 can whole kernel corn
11 can Ro*tel (diced tomato & chili)
3.25 can sliced black olives
1 lb Velveeta cheese block
1 tbsp chili powder
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp ground black pepper
¼ tsp smoked spanish paprika
¼ tsp ground red pepper
minced dried onion for topping

Directions

Cook the pasta to package directions.
Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water.
Drain pasta.

Open the canned ingredients and drain.

Chop the Velveeta into 1 inch pieces.

Heat a 12 inch cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
Add the canned ingredients. Heat for about 5 minutes.

Mix in all the dried seasonings excluding the dried minced onion.

Mix in the reserved cooking water.
Mix in the Velveeta until the sauce is creamy.

Mix in the cooked pasta.
Top with the dried minced onion and serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

One-Pot American Beef Goulash

One-Pot American Beef Goulash: An easy and delicious pasta recipe for the entire family!

Ingredients

2 pounds lean ground beef
2 large yellow onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
3 cups water
one (29 ounce) can) tomato sauce
one (28-ounce) can small diced tomatoes
splash of dry red wine
1/4 cup half and half
3 bay leaves
3 tbs soy sauce
1 tsp Kosher salt
2 tbs chopped fresh parsley, plus extra for serving
2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked
—serve with
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

In a Dutch oven, saute the ground beef over medium-high heat until no pink remains. Break up the meat while sauteeing. Spoon off any grease.

Add the onions and garlic to the pot and saute until they are tender and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add 3 cups water, along with the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, red wine, half and half, bay leaves, soy sauce, salt and parsley. Stir well.

Place a lid on the pot and allow this mixture to cook for 15 to 20 minutes. Add the elbow macaroni, stir well, return the lid to the pot, simmer for about 30 minutes.

Turn off the heat, remove the bay leaves, and allow the mixture to sit about 30 minutes longer before serving.

~ Marla Meridith