Baked Ziti and Kindness

I saw wonderful examples of humanity and kindness during the Olympics.  Many times I witnessed a veteran athlete consoling a rookie athlete when the grasp of an Olympic medal was no longer in reach.  But my favorite moment of simple humanity and kindness  was during the Women’s 5000 meter race.  USA’S Abbey DiAgostino and New Zealand’s Nikki Hamblin collided and fell on the track with both athlete’s suffering injuries .  When Nikki stopped and helped Abbey up, I knew from that one single act of kindness the heart of Nikki Hamblin.  I could see the pain on Nikki’s face from her own injuries as she helped her opponent to her feet.  It refreshed my heart to watch that moment.  There is so much ugly right now everywhere around us.   It is out of control ugly.  I want to see more kindness.  I want to see more respect.  I want to see more Nikki Hamblin’s rise up and show character, respect and kindness.  I am so thankful I witnessed that moment live, as it happened.  It brought tears to my eyes and a smile to my face

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This week I made Baked Ziti.  What I really need to say is that I totally dominated the Baked Ziti.  I crushed it.   Like, for realz.  Baked Ziti is like Lasagne without all the mess.  I mean, who needs all that sauce and cheese strung out from one of your kitchen to the other.  Not this babe!  9

This hit the spot!  Flavor was spot on and you know how I feel about flavor.  If it doesn’t have flavor, it ain’t worth eating.

First, cook your pasta al dente.  It will finish cooking in the oven.

 

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Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat.  Add onions and garlic to hot oil and cook until they start to soften.  Add tomatoes, tomato juice, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and oregano.  Stir and lower heat to simmer.  Let simmer for 30 minutes.

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In a separate bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, 2 cups of  grated mozzarella, Parmesan, egg, and salt and pepper. Stir together just enough to mix ingredients together.

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Pour the cooked, drained pasta into the bowl with the cheese mixture and toss slightly to combine.

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Take 1/3 cup of tomato sauce and put in the bottom of a prepared casserole dish.

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Add half the coated pasta to the casserole dish with the sauce in the bottom.

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Spoon half of the remaining sauce over the top.

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Top with half of the remaining mozzarella cheese.

Repeat with another layer of the coated pasta, then the sauce and then the mozzarella.

Bake for 20 minutes in a preheated oven at 350 degrees until bubbly.

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This is what my sweet Edna fed Sir Streusel and Me for dinner.  We didn’t complain.  We gave Edna a round of applause!

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I feel like I am not showing kindness because I did not have all of  you over to share this with me.  I showed kindness to Sir Streusel because he helped himself to two plates, so that counts, right?!

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Be kind to your family this week, make this Ziti.  They will return the kindness.

I truly do believe we need kindness right now.  There is so much ugly in the media right now that we need to be shining lights showing love, kindness and compassion to one another.  

Enjoy your Ziti!!!

Love ya,

Jody and Edna

Baked Ziti
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Ingredients
  1. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  2. 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  3. 1 onion—diced
  4. 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes, do not drain
  5. 2 (14 oz.) cans tomato sauce
  6. 3 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  7. ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  8. Salt and pepper to taste
  9. 1 teaspoon oregano
  10. 16 oz. box of Ziti
  11. 1 15 oz. carton ricotta cheese
  12. 1 ½ lb. grated mozzarella cheese
  13. 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  14. 1 egg
Instructions
  1. -Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. -Cook pasta al dente.
  3. -Drain and rinse the pasta. Stop the cooking by rinsing under cool water.
  4. -Heat olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add onions and garlic to hot oil and cook until they start to soften.
  5. -Add tomatoes, tomato juice, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and oregano. Stir and lower heat to simmer. Let simmer for 30 minutes.
  6. -Take 1/3 cup of tomato sauce and put in the bottom of a prepared casserole dish.
  7. -In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, 2 cups of the grated mozzarella, Parmesan, egg, and salt and pepper. Stir together just enough to mix ingredients together.
  8. -Pour the cooked, drained pasta into the bowl with the cheese mixture and toss slightly to combine.
  9. -Add half the coated pasta to the casserole dish with the sauce in the bottom.
  10. -Spoon half of the remaining sauce over the top.
  11. -Top with half of the remaining mozzarella cheese.
  12. -Repeat with another layer of the coated pasta, then the sauc,e and then the mozzarella.
  13. -Bake for 20 minutes until bubbly.
Adventures with Edna http://adventureswithedna.com/

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