Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Happy Leftovers - Spasagna!

This past weekend we made a huge, I'm talking HUGE batch of spaghetti and meatballs for our lifegroup at church. Our lifegroup is big! There are around 13 families, each family has 2.5 kids so meeting in a house for 2 hours for church and a meal is total awesome madness! I decided to go with my old stand by of spaghetti and meatballs because it is easy and kid friendly. We had plenty of food and ended up coming home with a big bowl of leftovers. We are not really a leftover kind of family. We ate some of the leftovers on Monday but still had a big batch left, and I knew I needed to get creative fast or I would pitch it all. Every time I have opened my fridge I have been trying to figure out what to do with all of that spaghetti! So, I decided to get creative and put those noodles to use! What I came up with is a combination of spaghetti and lasagna. I googled the word and there are similar dishes in the food world but most of them have you making everything from scratch instead of using up leftovers. I am sure you can do all of that, but I love the idea of being frugal with my leftovers and I like how the noodles and meatballs and sauce have already had time to become bff's in the flavor bowl. This recipe is super simple and once it's baked it is a gooey, cheesy, pasta concoction. It looks like ordinary baked spaghetti at first then when you cut into it this cheesy madness spills out! It will freeze well too....more on that later. Next time you are making some spaghetti, be sure to make a wee bit more so that you can make some spagana to put in your freezer for a lazy day meal!

Yellow Rose Spasagna

5-8 cups of leftover spaghetti and meatballs (or meat sauce, or just plain sauce if you are not a meat family)
1 1/2 cup jarred or homemade pasta sauce
1 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1, 8oz package of cream cheese softened
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp garlic salt

In a big bowl, combine the spaghetti and half of the sauce. If your pasta was dry the first time, you might add in a splash or two of water with the sauce. You don't want dried out crusty noodles.
In a 9x13 pan, spread out half of the noodles. Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, sour cream, Italian seasoning and garlic salt. Spread the cream mixture over the noodles.
Next, sprinkle over half of the cheese. Spread the remaining spaghetti noodles over the cheese. Top with the remaining sauce and cheese. I like to add an extra sprinkle of Italian seasoning on top.

Bake in the oven on 350 for 20 minutes lightly covered (meaning, tent a piece of foil on top so that it doesn't stick to the cheese) Uncover and bake for 10-15  more minutes until heated through and cheese is super melty.
If you are wanting to freeze, assemble but add in 1/2 cup more of pasta sauce, then cover. Remove from the freezer the night before you want to use it, and allow it to sit on your counter for an hour or two prior to cooking to get it thawed completely. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, lightly covered. Uncover and bake for 15-20 minutes more until heated through.

Enjoy Y'all!

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