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Leftover Spaghetti Pie--Using it Up to Prevent Throwing it Out

May 17th, 2012 at 02:04 pm

Well, I clearly made too much spaghetti on Monday because there is still a good batch of noodles and sauce sitting in the fridge. Normally the kids eat it after school for snacks but this time it just appears to be sitting there. So I got to thinking about it. My first thought was freeze the sauce and don't worry about the pasta, everything says pasta doesn't freeze well. But that thought doesn't go over well with me, because I am trying to use up all my food, not just throw it out because I don't know what to do with it.

Then I thought, wait a minute. Lasagna freezes great and it's pasta. And I see prepared frozen spaghetti and mac and cheese all the time when I go down the frozen food aisle at the grocery store. Maybe plain pasta by itself doesn't freeze well, but what about some kind of casserole. And then I remembered something I used to make back in our low income days after a huge pot of spaghetti was getting boring. Leftover Spaghetti Pie!

I don't think I ever really had a recipe for this, I kind of just threw it together. I'd grease a pie plate or a square glass baking dish with butter (because everything tastes better with butter) and I'd dump the leftover spaghetti in. I'd take a butter knife and kind of cut up the pasta into more manageable chunks. Then I'd mix in about a pound of cooked ground meat.

I used to be in the habit of making up five pounds of hamburger at a time and keeping some in the freezer in one pound bags for busy days, so I'd just grab one, give it a quick thaw in the microwave, and dump it in with the spaghetti. I'd then dump in the leftover spaghetti sauce (unless I'd mixed the sauce and pasta when we ate it). Usually about 2 cups worth (or if you don't have sauce made up 1 16 ounce jar's worth). I'd mix it around until it was all evenly distrubted and then I'd mix in some hard cheese like parmesan or romano, sometimes both. Maybe 1/2 a cup or so in total. Then I'd cover the top with mozzarella and then sprikle some extra sharp cheddar cheese on top of that.

I'd bake it in the oven for about 30 minutes on 350 degrees and out would come a beautiful, browned, bubbly casserole. So that's what I'm going to do with my leftovers. Only without cooking it. I will cover it with aluminum foil instead and put it in the freezer, take it out one night next week to thaw and bake it for dinner the next night.

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