What joy the gospel gives me. I can approach the throne of God with confidence, not because I've done a good job at my spiritual duties, but because I'm clothed in the righteousness of Jesus Christ. ~ C.J. Mahaney

Baked Ziti and Spinach Artichoke Salad

Here are two delicious recipes for you to try, both from Rachel Ray on Food Network. They are great together. The first time I made these, they were a huge hit with my family, so I've made them together many times since. The ziti makes a lot, so if you have a small family, you can cut the recipe in half, OR you can make the whole thing and divide it between two smaller casserole dishes. It freezes and reheats well. I'm just sayin'...if I had a small family, which I obviously do not, I'd still make the whole recipe. It just makes sense to multiply your efforts in the kitchen. That's my thinking, anyway.

The salad recipe is huge, so I definitely halve this unless I'm taking it to a party, which I have done. It calls for 12 oz of spinach, but I have found that a 6 ounce bag of spinach, and half the dressing, is plenty for my hungry crowd. And we love us some salad. Seriously, you have to try this one. It is so delicious and refreshing, with lemon zest, garlic, red-wine vinegar, and olive oil in the dressing. And the artichoke hearts....Oh My Goodness....Just Awesome.

Start the red sauce....garlic, olive oil, canned tomatoes, and basil.
This bubbles on the stove for a little while.

Meanwhile, get the pasta started.

Make the white sauce and cook until it thickens.

Now dump the ziti and the red sauce into your 11X14" or big ol' baking dish.

Next you pour the white sauce over and top with heaping helpings of cheese.
This then goes under the broiler for a few minutes.

There ya' go...but hang on, we gotta make the salad .

OK, here's the basis of the salad- spinach and artichoke hearts. Mmmmmm!

The dressing calls for lemon zest. You need to get a micro-plane if you don't have one. I tried zesting lemons with a grater for years. No good. What a huge frustration. A micro-plane makes fun, easy work of this task.

In a small dish mix the lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, and red wine vinegar.

Combine all that with the olive oil and drizzle it over the spinach,
artichoke hearts and shredded Parmesean cheese.
Holly couldn't wait to help put this together.

Call in the troops and put on the Italian music.
Oh, and don't forget the Italian Greyhound.
She'll taste it to make sure it's safe for you to eat.


Anonymous said...

Looks like Lacy is enjoying her meal. I guess you fix "lotsa" as Holly used to say!

Alyssa said...

Okay, this looks really good!!! I want some!!! I'll have to tell Daddy to make some for us!

Anonymous said...

Would you consider adopting a 45 year old woman with 3 kids????? Just wondering.


Hope you all are well.


Robyn Jones said...

WOW! I jsut looked at your post..and now I am STARVING...
BTW...I just met your daughter on the farm application on facebook, and I have been talking to her for half an hour...She is a very remarkable young woman. You should be very proud of her...(Which of course I am sure you are...LOL!)