Tag Archives: Parmesan Cheese

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce



I added a couple cups of leftover Slow Cooked Spicy Pulled Pork to this pasta to make it extra delicious.

12 oz Fettuccine
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 Medium Onion, finely diced
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
2 (15oz) Cans Tomato Sauce
Salt and Pepper
1 Cup Heavy Cream
½ Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
Chopped Fresh Basil

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt and cook the pasta.  Reserve a little cooking liquid before draining.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add olive oil, butter, onion and garlic.  Cook until onion is softened.  Add tomato sauce, salt and pepper, and heavy cream.  Stir together.  Once hot, stir in the parmesan cheese then toss in the pasta.  Add in a little of the reserved cooking liquid if the sauce is too thick.

Just before serving, add the basil and toss to combine.

Yield: 6-8 Servings

-Recipe adapted from The Pioneer Woman Cooks cookbook-

Fancy Mac and Cheese

fancymacOh my!  This was amazing.  I need to make this again very soon.  Chloe loved it too.  She loved the bacon, mushrooms and onions the best.  The roasted mushrooms and sautéed onions are amazing.  The mixture of cheeses make this mac and cheese super awesome amazing.  I didn’t end up using the Gruyère cheese, so I just added more parmesan and fontina cheeses.

16 oz White Mushrooms, sliced
Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
1 ½ lbs Macaroni
8 Slices Thick Cut Bacon
2 Onions, thinly sliced
4 Tablespoons Butter
¼ Cup Flour
2 Cups Whole Milk
½ Cup Half-and-Half
2 Eggs, beaten
½ Cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
½ Cup Gruyère Cheese, grated
½ Cup Fontina Cheese, grated
4 oz Goat Cheese (chèvre)
4 oz Crumbled Gorgonzola Cheese

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Place mushrooms on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roast until browned, about 20-25 minutes.  Reserve.  Turn oven temperature down to 350°F.

Cook the macaroni to al dente.

Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crispy.  Drain on paper towels, leaving 1 Tablespoon of bacon fat in the skillet.  Chop the bacon and reserve.

In the same skillet with the bacon fat, cook the onions over medium-low heat.  Stir occasionally until light brown, about 15 minutes.  Reserve.

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat.  Whisk in flour and cook for about a minute.  Whisk in the milk and cook for about 4 minutes until thick and bubbly.  Whisk in the half-and-half, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper.  Temper in the eggs by adding a ladle of the sauce into a bowl with the eggs.  Mix with a fork while adding the sauce.  Pour the eggs into the sauce while whisking.  Stir the parmesan, Gruyere, fontina and goat cheeses into the sauce to melt.  Fold in the cooked macaroni until coated with the cheese sauce.

Butter a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.  Layer in half the onions, half the macaroni, half the mushrooms, half the Gorgonzola, and half the bacon.  Repeat these layers.

Bake until bubbly, about 20-25 minutes.

Yield: 6 for main dish/12 for side dish
-Recipe from The Pioneer Woman Cooks cookbook-

Spaghetti Squash with Sausage

Spaghetti Squash with Sausage is super delicious!  This is my new favorite way to eat spaghetti squash.  When I made this, I cooked the squash differently than described below.  I cut it in half before roasting, but it was a huge mistake because I chipped my ceramic knife by doing so.  I do not suggest using a ceramic knife to cut spaghetti squash.  Go down to your local hardware store and buy a nice saw for squash cutting if you plan to cut them open before roasting.  I think I will just stick with roasting them whole from now on to make this yummy Spaghetti Squash with Sausage dinner.

1 Spaghetti Squash
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Onion, thinly sliced
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
2 Uncooked Italian Sausages, casings removed
1 Cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning
Salt & Pepper, to taste


Preheat oven to 375°F.

Poke several holes in the squash with a fork.  Place on a baking sheet and bake until tender, about 1 hour.

After the squash has been in the oven about 30 minutes, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium/high heat.  Add the onion and cook until softened and browned.  Add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds.  Add sausage, breaking it up with a wooden spoon.  Cook until the sausage is browned.  Sprinkle in the Italian seasoning.

When the squash is tender, cut in half lengthwise.  Scoop out and discard the seeds.  Shred the squash with a fork and add to the skillet.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove from heat and stir in the Parmesan cheese.


Serves: 4

Sausage and Broccoli Risotto


This Sausage and Broccoli Risotto is a rich and creamy meal.  The sweet Italian sausage gives this dish a fantastic flavor.  You could even use a spicy sausage to give the Sausage and Broccoli Risotto a kick!  The broccoli is stir-fried quickly, so it retains some crunch when the risotto is finished.  This Sausage and Broccoli Risotto is seriously delicious.



8 Cups Chicken Broth
3 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, divided
1 Head Broccoli, cut into small florets
3 Sweet Italian Sausages, about 1 lb
1/2 Medium Onion, finely chopped
1 Medium Carrot, finely chopped
1 Cup Brown Rice
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1 (14 oz) Can Diced Tomatoes
3/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese, grated


Bring the chicken broth to a bubble in a sauce pan over high heat.  Reduce heat to low to keep warm.

Heat 1 Tablespoon butter in a large pot over high heat.  Add the broccoli and cook, stirring frequently until tender, 3-4 minutes.  Reserve on a plate.

Remove the casings from the sausages.  Add the sausage, onion and carrot to the pot.  Cook until the sausage is browned, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the rice and garlic, cooking for 1 minute.  Pour in the diced tomatoes, bring to a bubble and simmer for a couple minutes.

Start adding the warm broth, a ladle at a time.  Stir the rice each time broth is added and let cook until almost all the broth is absorbed before adding more.  Keep adding broth until the rice is softened and creamy, about 45 minutes.

Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining 2 Tablespoons butter, Parmesan cheese and broccoli.

Yield: 4 Servings


-Recipe inspired by a recipe in Food Network Magazine-

Skillet Penne with Chicken and Broccoli


Everyone loves a good one-pot meal for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.  This Skillet Penne with Chicken and Broccoli cooks all in the same skillet in just under 30 minutes total.  Dinner doesn’t get much easier than this!  Garlic is a main flavor in this Skillet Penne with Chicken and Broccoli, as there are 6 cloves of fresh garlic in there.  The garlic creates a delicious base for this meal.  There is also a bit of heat from the red pepper flakes, although not too overpowering.  Skillet Penne with Chicken and Broccoli is a simple, classic Italian meal with tons of flavor that I hope you enjoy.


1 lb Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1 Onion, thinly sliced
6 Garlic Cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 teaspoon Dried Oregano
2 1/2 Cups Chicken Broth
2 1/2 Cups Water
8 oz Penne
8 oz Broccoli Florets, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese


Thinly slice the chicken breasts and season with salt and pepper.  Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium/high heat.  Once hot, add the chicken and let brown for 1 minute without moving it.  Stir and let cook another 2 minutes.  Reserve on a plate.

Add 1 Tablespoon of olive oil to the same skillet over medium heat.  Add onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt, cooking until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add garlic, red pepper flakes and oregano and cook for about 30 seconds.  Pour in 1/2 cup broth and simmer until some of the liquid is evaporated.  Add the remaining broth, water and penne.  Simmer over medium/high heat until the pasta is almost cooked, about 12 minutes.

Add the broccoli and chicken with any juices from the plate.  Simmer until the pasta and broccoli are tender and the chicken is heated and cooked through.  Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining 2 Tablespoons olive oil and the Parmesan cheese.



Yield: 4 Servings

-Recipe adapted from Cook’s Country magazine-

Asparagus Risotto

I think I say this all the time, but risotto is my favorite food.  So creamy, delicious and cheesy.  The asparagus is a nice addition to risotto.


1 lb Asparagus, tough ends trimmed & cut into 1-inch pieces (keep the stalks separate from the tips)
6 to 7 cups Chicken Broth
2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Onion, diced
1 1/2 Cups Brown Rice
1/4 teaspoon Salt
3 Tablespoons Butter
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, grated


Bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil.  Add half of the asparagus stalks (no tips).  Cook until soft, about 5 minutes.  Drain and blend in a food processor with a little water until smooth.  Set aside.

Heat the broth in a sauce pan and keep warm over low heat.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.

Add the rice and cook for 2-3 minutes.  Add the broth a ladle full at a time, stirring frequently until almost all the liquid is absorbed before adding more.  Keep adding liquid until the rice is softened, about 45 minutes.  After about 30 minutes, add in the remaining asparagus stalks and tips.

Once the rice is softened, stir in the asparagus puree.

Remove from the heat, stir in the butter and cheese.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.



Yield: 4 Servings