Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pizza Spaghetti Lasagna

First of all, let me apologize for the lack of recipes this past week! I'm not losing interest in sharing my recipes, I just haven't made anything worth sharing. We had leftovers, things out of the freezer, we went to a Thai restaurant, and I made teriyaki chicken legs using a bottle of teriyaki sauce I found in the pantry that was about to expire. I did actually consider sharing it but chicken + bottle of sauce is hardly a recipe and I have a great teriyaki chicken recipe with homemade sauce that I'd rather share later.

As I mentioned before, if I ask my husband what he wants for dinner when I'm making up my weekly meal plans, without fail he says he wants casserole. If I ask him what kind of casserole, he says he wants this one. It's adapted from this recipe but we call it Pizza Spaghetti Lasagna. Clunky for sure and I've TRIED to change the name without success, but Pizza Spaghetti Lasagna sums it up perfectly. It has our favorite pizza toppings and pizza sauce, spaghetti, and is baked like a lasagna. Italians would probably be horrified by this travesty and for that I apologize! We aren't Italian thought and we love it. I first tried the recipe 4 1/2 years ago and I've probably made it 15 times since then (that's a lot for me!). The recipe looked so odd that I just had to try it and I've altered it some over the years.

Be warned: this is is a particularly unattractive casserole and I'm almost a little bit embarrassed to share it. When you mix up everything in the pot and see how runny it is, you're probably going to doubt me pretty hard and wonder if you're going to end up with PBJs for dinner, but trust me. Just stir everything up and bake it and it will turn out fine! The noodles absorb the extra liquid and it ends up creamy, noodly, tomatoey, pizza-y, spaghetti-y and lasagna-y.

Quick note: For this particular version I used spaghetti sauce from the freezer and added some more spices, but I usually use my pizza sauce. If you go the pizza sauce route, you can triple the recipe and either use 1/2 cup for something else or just add it all in. It will be fine. You can also substitute your favorite pizza toppings instead of the pepperoni, mushrooms and olives. The casserole freezes well too so you can freeze half in a Ziploc bag before you bake it, then thaw, pour into a greased 8 by 8 pan, sprinkle with a cup of cheese, and bake half an our or so.

Behold, my culinary delight:

Pizza Spaghetti Lasagna

1/2 lb spaghetti noodles, broken into quarters
1/4 to 1/2 lb sliced pepperoni, cut into quarters
1/2 lb sliced mushrooms
1 small can sliced olives, drained
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 C milk
2 1/2 C pizza sauce
1/2 t salt
2 C shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9 by 13 baking dish. Cook spaghetti in salted water until al dente. Drain. Saute pepperoni in skillet until crisp and remove to a plate (this will only take a couple of minutes). Saute the mushrooms in the grease left in the skillet (you may need to add olive oil if you used turkey pepperoni). Add to pot with drained spaghetti and all other ingredients except cheese. Spoon into prepared dish, sprinkle with cheese, and bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes or until cheese is golden and casserole is bubbly.

Yield: 8 servings

1 comment:

  1. yum. This looks really good. We love Italian food. And we have spaghetti and pizza a lot around our putting them together sounds great!