Homemaking 4 My Guys

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Archive for the tag “pasta”

Jen’s Marinara Sauce

My friend Jen is half Italian.  She learned how to make this marinara sauce from her family.  It is amazing.  I like to use it not only for pasta dishes like spaghetti and lasagna but also as pizza sauce.  Jen uses this with her meatballs (which are widely known and coveted in our community) for meatball subs.  
Thanks to her hubby,Brook, for allowing us to share in wealth while watching football.  You’re a jewel too.  Love ya friends.
It is very economical to make.  Much cheaper than purchasing pre-made sauce, better for us and quick as a lick….
Keep it handy, you will absolutely love it!!!   Printable version here: Jens Marinara Sauce
1 Jumbo can Tomato sauce (restaurant size from Sam’s Club or Costco)
Minced garlic (to taste)
2 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon Olive oil, divided
1 or 2 large cans tomato paste
1 large onion
Basil (to taste)
parsley (to taste)
1. Pour tomato sauce in large pot or crock pot.
2. Sauté garlic in 1  teaspoon olive oil in pan.
 3. Once garlic is tender add garlic to sauce then add tomato paste to pan garlic was cooked in and sauté until sauce is orange.
4. Add tomato paste to sauce in pot and mix well.
6. Blend in 2 tbsp. olive oil.
7. Peel outer skin of onion and cut ends off.  Float onion in large pot of sauce.
 8. Add basil, parsley, olive oil, and paste/garlic mixture to large pot and simmer for a while or overnight.
Place marinara sauce in containers,  freezer.  Use as needed.

Hearty Penne Beef

Our family has fallen in love with the flavor of the sauce in this casserole.  So simple and so yummy!!  The sauce recipe can easily be doubled or tripled and stores very well in the freezer.  Pasta does not do well in the freezer (you can use pasta cooked al dente and it will do okay).  Pull your frozen sauce out, cook up so fresh pasta, add somHearty Penne Beefe fresh french garlic herb bread and a crisp salad and you have a wonderful meal.  Quick and easy.  I found this dish on Taste of Home’s website.

Hearty Beef Penne Pasta (click on title for printable version)


2 3/4 c uncooked penne pasta (any pasta will do, we like mini shells)

1 lbs. ground beef

1 teas. garlic, minced

1 can (15 oz.) tomato puree

1 can (15 0z. beef froth (I use my homemade or made with bullion)

1 1/2 teas. Italian seasoning

1 teas. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teas. salt

2 c. chopped fresh spinach ( I use spinach that I have cooked and pureed, froze in ice cube trays)

2 c. (8 oz.) mozzarella cheese

1/4 teas. pepper


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Drain. Stir in the tomato puree, broth, Italian seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper.
  2. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10-15 minutes or until slightly thickened. Add spinach; cook for 1-2 minutes or until wilted.
  3. Drain pasta; stir into beef mixture. Sprinkle with cheese; cover and cook for 3-4 minutes or until cheese is melted.

This recipe serves 6-8, it makes a quart of sauce and it more than serves my hungry guys and leaves a few leftovers on occasion 🙂


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