Category Archives: Pasta

Taco Spaghetti



Taco Spaghetti

Cheesy comfort food.  Very easy to make and very quick.  30 minutes and one pot and you have dinner on the table.  Serve either Creamsicle Fluff or Strawberry Fluff after your meal.  Refreshing and will cool your mouth off.

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 (1.5-oz.) pkg. mild taco seasoning
  • 1 (10-oz.) can Ro-Tel Mild Diced Tomatoes & Green Chilies
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 8 oz. spaghetti
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 1 Roma tomato, diced, optional
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves, optional

Brown ground beef in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium high heat, crumbling the beef as it cooks;  stir in taco seasoning.

Stir in Ro-Tel, tomato paste, spaghetti and 3 cups water.  Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer until pasta is cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Remove from heat and top with cheeses.  Cover until melted.

Serve immediately, garnished with tomato and cilantro, if desired.

Serves 4.

“God desires willing hearts ready to be used.”


Broccoli Mac and Cheese Gratin



Broccoli Mac and Cheese Gratin

Awesome skillet dinner in an hour.  So amazingly delicious!!  Creamy, cheesy, bacon and broccoli.  What more could you ask for?

  • 6 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion (I used frozen chopped onion)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (I used frozen minced garlic)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt (depending on how salty your bacon is)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper, opt.
  • 1 1/4 cups (5-oz.) grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 1/4 cups (5-oz.) shredded sharp white Cheddar cheese, divided
  • 8 oz. cavatappi pasta, cooked (don’t salt water)(If you can’t find cavatappi, elbow macaroni will work)
  • 2 cups broccoli florets, blanched (I threw mine in the pasta water for last few minutes of cooking)
  • 2 tablespoons panko (Janpanese bread crumbs)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp.  Remove bacon; let drain on paper towels, reserving drippings in skillet.

Add onion and garlic to skillet.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5 minutes.  Stir in flour; cook for 1 minute.  Gradually stir in milk; cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Stir in salt, mustard, and pepper.

Remove from heat.  Stir in 1 cup Parmesan and 1 cup Cheddar until melted.  Add bacon, cooked pasta, and broccoli, stirring to combine.  Top with bread crumbs, remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan, and remaining 1/4 cup Cheddar.

Bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 10 minutes.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

(This comes right to the top of the skillet, so make sure you use at least a 10-inch pan.)

“Gratefulness is the heart’s response to God’s undeserved love.”


Seafood Lasagna


seafoodlasagnaSeafood Lasagna

This is wonderfully rich and delicious!!

  • 1 green onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 (8-oz.) bottle clam juice
  • 1 pound bay scallops
  • 1 pound uncooked small shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 (8-oz.) container lump crabmeat
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper, divided
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 9 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained

In a large skillet, saute onion in oil and 2 tablespoons butter until tender.  Stir in broth and clam juice; bring to a boil.  Add the scallops, shrimp, crab and 1/8 teaspoon pepper; return to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 4-5 minutes or until shrimp turn pink and scallops are firm and opaque, stirring gently.  Drain, reserving cooking liquid; set seafood mixture aside.

In  a large saucepan, melt the remaining butter; stir in flour until smooth.  Combine milk and reserved cooking liquid; gradually add to the saucepan.  Add salt and remaining pepper.  Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.

Remove from the heat; stir in the cream and 1/4 cup cheese.  Stir 3/4 cup white sauce into the seafood mixture.

Spread 1/2 cup white sauce in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish.  Top with three noodles; spread with half of the seafood mixture and 1 1/4 cups sauce.  Repeat layers.  Top with remaining noodles, sauce and cheese.

Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown.  Let stand for 15 minutes before cutting.

Makes 12 servings.

“We have committed The Golden Rule to memory; now let us commit it to life.”


Cashew-Chicken Rotini Salad



Cashew-Chicken Rotini Salad

This is a beautiful and fresh salad to serve at potlucks or picnics.  Spring is coming and the perfect meal-in-one.  Delicious!  It makes quite a large amount, so I made a half recipe.

  • 1 pkg. (16-0z.) spiral or rotini pasta
  • 4 cups cubed cooked chicken (I poached my chicken and it was very moist)
  • 1 can (20-oz.) pineapple tidbits, drained
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced celery
  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions (I left out)
  • 1 cup seedless red grapes
  • 1 cup seedless green grapes
  • 1 pkg. (5-oz.) dried cranberries
  • 1 cup ranch salad dressing
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 cups salted cashews

Cook pasta according to package directions.  Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the chicken, pineapple, celery, onions, grapes and cranberries.  Drain pasta and rinse in cold water; stir into chicken mixture.

In a small bowl, whisk the ranch dressing and mayonnaise.  Pour over salad and toss to coat.  Cover and refrigerate for a least 1 hour.  Just before serving, stir in cashews.

Makes 12 servings.

“With God, all things are possible.”


Hoop Cheese Mac and Cheese



Hoop Cheese Mac and Cheese

This is the simplest mac and cheese that you can make.  My husband says it is the best he has ever eaten.  Hoop cheese is a farmer’s style cheese that commonly has a red or black wax rind.  This cheese is getting rather hard to find, so if you can’t find it, just use a good Cheddar.  I actually used Longhorn-style mild cheddar.

  • 2 cups dry elbow macaroni
  • 12 oz. red wax hoop cheese, cubed
  • 1 (5-oz.) can evaporated milk

Bring 1 quart of water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.  Once boiling, add 1/2 tablespoon salt and macaroni, and cook until tender.  Drain the macaroni, and return it to the pot over low heat.  Add the cheese and evaporated milk.  Stir until the cheese is melted and creamy.  Serve immediately.

Serves 4.

“Worship of the masterful Creator begins with a grateful heart.”



Chicken & Noodles



Chicken & Noodles

This is my husband’s favorite meal.  He asks for it every year for his birthday along with apple dumplings.  It’s so yummy!

  • 9 cups hot water
  • 3/4 cup chopped carrots
  • 3/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chicken bouillon (or soup base)
  • 3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 lb. cooked boneless, skinless chicken breast, torn into large pieces
  • 1 (16-oz.) bag Reames frozen noodles

In a large stock pot, mix water, carrots, celery, onions, chicken bouillon, butter, salt, pepper and chicken pieces.

Bring to a boil, turn to low heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add noodles and simmer on medium-low heat for an additional 10 minutes.  (I think cooked mine a little longer.)


Makes 6 – 8 servings.

“Dark fears flee in the light of God’s presence.”

Coney Island Hot Dog Casserole



Coney Island Hot Dog Casserole

Four thumbs up on this one.  Very delicious!

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 lb. hot dogs, chopped
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 2 (15-oz.) cans tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup olives, sliced (I used green olives, but you can use whatever you like)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 qts. boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni
  • 4 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olives for garnish

Heat oil in large skillet.  Add hot dogs and brown on all sides.  Remove from skillet and set aside.  Add ground beef and onions to drippings, stir and brown,  Drain excess fat.

Stir in hot dogs, sauce, sliced olives, salt and pepper; set aside.  Cook macaroni with salt; drain.  Add to meat sauce and toss.

Put grated cheese across top and turn into a 2 qt. casserole.

Bake 40 minutes at 350 degrees.  Garnish with olives.

Serves 4 to 6.

“Christ’s forgiveness is the door to a new beginning.”

Hamburger Goulash



Hamburger Goulash

This is a quick and easy meal to make.  I think I have made this since the day I got married almost 54 years ago.  It is total comfort food!  Sprinkle some cheese on top if you like, but I like mine without.  Serve with green beans or a salad.

  • 2 lbs. lean ground beef
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 (15-oz.) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (14.5-oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 8 oz. small shell macaroni, cooked
  • Shredded cheddar cheese, if desired

Brown ground beef, onion and garlic until no longer pink and onion is translucent.  Stir in salt and paprika.

Add tomato sauce and diced tomatoes and simmer while cooking pasta.  Add pasta and serve.

Serves 6 to 8.  (If you’re lucky.  You might need to double this recipe.)

“Fly the flag of Christ’s presence to show that the King is in residence in your life.”




Pasta with Salmon Cream Sauce



Pasta with Salmon Cream Sauce

Oh my goodness, this was so good!

  • 12 oz. fresh or dried capellini, linguine, spaghetti, or other thin pasta
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 cup frozen petite peas, thawed
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups (about 12 oz.) flaked cooked salmon or 1 (14.75-oz.) can red salmon, drained and bones and skin removed, and flaked
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, preferably Parmigiano Reggiano
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley, preferably flat-leaf Italian type or 1 tablespoon dried

Cook pasta al dente, according to directions on box.  Meanwhile, melt butter in skillet over medium heat.  Add peas and saute for 1 minute.  Add heavy cream, and reduce heat to low.  Add salmon, Parmesan cheese and salt to taste.  Simmer until cheese melts and salmon heated through, about 2 minutes; do not allow to boil.

Drain pasta and place in a heated bowl.  Pour sauce over the pasta.  Add the parsley and gently toss to mix well.  Serve immediately.

Serves 4 to 6.

“Christ is the ultimate answer to life’s greatest questions.”

Shrimp Scampi



Shrimp Scampi

This is a very simple pasta dinner that you can put on the table in 30 minutes.  Creamy, lemony sauce over hot pasta with either shrimp or bay scallops.  Yum!!  Be sure to use a high-quality extra-virgin olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice.

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest plus 1/3 cup juice (2 lemons)
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced to a paste
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 oz. Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 lb. small shrimp (51 to 60/lb.), peeled, deveined and tails removed
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 lb. pasta (I used spaghetti, but angel hair would be good too.)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil (I didn’t use because I didn’t have any on hand.)

Whisk olive oil, lemon zest and juice, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in bowl, then stir in Parmesan until thick and creamy.

Pat shrimp dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.  Melt 2 tablespoons butter in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add shrimp in single layer and cook until shrimp are curled and pink on both sides, about 2 minutes (3 minutes for bay scallops); transfer to separate bowl and cover.

Meanwhile, bring 4 qts. water to boil in large pot.  Add pasta and 1 tablespoon salt and cook, stirring often, until al dente.  Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water, then drain pasta and return it to pot.  Add olive oil mixture, shrimp (or scallops) and any accumulated juices, remaining 2 tablespoons butter, and basil and toss to combine.  Season with salt and pepper to taste and add reserved cooking water as needed to adjust consistency.  Serve.

Serves 4 to 6.

“God pursues us in our restlessness, receives us in our sinfulness, holds us in our brokenness.”