September 14, 2007

Aunt Janey's Quick and Easy Tortellini Alfredo

John and I were at Olive Garden in St. Louis sitting at the bar - there were no tables available, of course, or we wouldn't have been in the bar. The gentleman next to us requested the kitchen to make this dish.


Either frozen or dried Tortellini. John and I need 1/2 package of the dried. We like the five cheese kind.

1/2 jar of Alfredo sauce - I have Frank Sinatra's on hand because I haven't found one that is outstanding and am trying Frank's. Start with your favorite brand of Italian sauces in a jar. One time I purchased dried packaged Alfredo Sauce - bad. Also, I am looking for a low calorie, low fat Alfredo sauce recipe. I could probably figure it out if I would just work on it but the purchased makes this a ten minute meal.

As many pre-cooked frozen shrimp as you would like. I keep this on hand for several different quick meals. One could cook their own but this is a quick and easy recipe. I also do a large salad topped with thawed shrimp for a quick meal.

Frozen peas (or could use fresh asparagus, steamed)


Put the shrimp and peas out to thaw [shrimp thaws well in cool water; leave it in the package -- so do peas, for that matter]

Cook and drain the tortellini.

Combine the above, heating thoroughly and serve. Can sprinkle with a grated Italian cheese.

Serve with garlic bread and either a Caesar or garden salad. Enjoy.

[Note from Margaret: In my thinking, there are certain things that are just not worth making in a low fat version. Alfredo sauce is one of those. Fake butter and low fat milk, to me, are not going to get it! Good butter, good cream. That's what it takes. But, Aunt J, if you figure it out then you will get the Best Recipe Modification Award for 2007-2008!]

September 6, 2007

Italtian! Our September Recipes

So confident am I that we are going to get multiple submissions this month that I am putting the plural right in the title. RecipeS. Ours. I know you're on the verge. -- Margaret

Italian Tomato Gravy -- Cheryl's First Recipe!

Okay, I'm actually going to do this one...I make great tomato "gravy." I make a big pot and freeze it in small containers to use throughout the week. It's very easy and doesn't take as much time as you'd think.

2 (large) cans Italian whole canned tomatoes (I use Scalfadi)

1 can Italian tomato paste (also scalfadi)

Fresh herbs: oregano, basil, parsley (I chop a couple of leaves each pretty wide)

1 small onion, chopped (you can also chop a whole big onion, use 1/2 and freeze to use the next time--if you want add a small clove of garlic; I can't eat garlic)



Merlot (wine)

Romano cheese (grated)

Olive oil (a good one)

1. Get a big pot and heat up the oil with the fresh chopped herbs, salt and pepper). I use a good amount of salt to bring out the flavor.

2. When oil's hot, put in the chopped onion and saute until they're transparent and soft -- not brown. This alone will smell really good.

3. Add the whole canned tomatoes and paste and then use a potato masher to smush really good. In fact, I smush every time instead of stirring. Heat well and simmer for as long as you want but really, by the time you make the pasta it's ready (the paste thickens it up; if you don't have paste, then you really should simmer until it's nice and thick, and it can take all day).

4. Add the cheese and Merlot towards the end. If it's bland, then add a little more salt and cheese to taste.