Simple, inexpensive side or main dish-Pasta, tomatoes, cheese-No Meat

msgenie516

The Happy Hen
11 Years
May 16, 2008
575
6
141
Nesconset, LI, NY
This is a really simple recipe that my family loves! I got this from my mom (who is now 88 years old) and I remember I loved it as a child. It’s great when you have little time to cook and don’t want to spend a fortune--Mom was very thrifty! It can also be made ahead (except for baking) and refrigerated until you are ready to cook. I would just increase the baking time a little to compensate for starting out with a cold dish.

It reheats wonderfully and if there are not enough leftovers, it can be used as a side dish the second time around. I do sprinkle a little water over it when reheating as the pasta seems to absorb some of the moisture while refrigerated and it can be a bit dry otherwise.

This should feed at least 3 to 4 very hungry people! We are big eaters so you may even get more out of it, especially if there are children.

It always surprises me that I get LOTS of requests for this, especially since it is so simple! People are always asking "When are you making that delicious macaroni with the tomatoes and cheese again?"

Pasta With Tomatoes And Cheese

Ingredients:

1 lb. of Ziti or Penne

2 14 ½ ounce cans of diced tomatoes

About 2/3 of a can of water from rinsing the tomato cans

1 10 oz. package of Cracker Barrel Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese (white or yellow)

1 stick (¼ pound) of butter

Boil the pasta in lightly salted water to your desired tenderness. In the meantime, empty both cans of tomatoes and the water into a large ovenproof bowl. Cut up the cheese into small pieces and add to the bowl. When the pasta is done, add to the tomatoes and cheese and mix thoroughly. Cut up the butter and arrange evenly over the top. Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.

Hints:

In the summer, I have tomatoes from my garden and I peel them and cut them up to equal 4 cups. I still add a little water for extra moisture. The flavor is definitely different with the fresh tomatoes, but very good.

I have used up to a pound of cheese with no problem. It doesn’t have to be Cracker Barrel but that’s what I usually pick up on my shopping trip. Please don’t be tempted to buy grated Cheddar, as the dish turns out too “pasty”--I tried it once and never again.

I used salted butter but I‘m sure unsalted can also be used.

This is especially good with a garden salad and a loaf of freshly baked homemade bread--and a glass of wine wouldn‘t hurt, either! Enjoy!
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Genie
 

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