This is a version of a dish my Mom use to fix for us four kids when we were growing up. A casserole with spaghetti, meat and a flavorful sauce. I don’t remember any cheese in Mom’s baked spaghetti but that ingredient is a definite plus.
I’ve noticed various versions of Baked Spaghetti recipes appear but the one that caught my eye was by Dora Charles, head cook for Paula Deen at one time. This recipe is in one of Paula’s cookbooks, where she said “Fodor’s Travel Guide called it the Best Baked Spaghetti in the South”. How could I go wrong with trying this recipe. I did change a few things especially the seasoning.
Baked Spaghetti, Adapted
- 2 cups canned diced petite tomatoes
- 2 cups tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup onions, diced
- 1/2 cup green peppers, diced
- 1-1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning (salt free)
- 1-1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
- 2 tsp. sugar
- 2 small bay leaves
- 1-1/2 lbs. ground chuck ( or a combination of meats)
- 8 oz. angelhair pasta, uncooked and broken in half or even quartered
- 1-1/4 cups sharp cheddar, grated and divided
- 1-1/4 cups Monterey Jack cheese, grated and divided
In a large saucepan, combine the first nine ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 1 hour. Remove the bay leaves.
Cook the ground meat until the pink is gone; drain. Add to the tomato mixture and simmer another 20 minutes. While this is cooking prepare the pasta according to package directions and drain.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cover the bottom of a 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan with 1/3 of the tomato sauce. Add half of the pasta and then half of the divided cheeses. Repeat the layer, ending with sauce. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Top with the remaining cheese and return to the oven until the cheese melts and is bubbly.
Comment: The original recipe called for 1-1/2 tsp. The Lady’s House Seasoning (mix 1 cup salt, 1/4 cup black pepper and 1/4 cup garlic powder). This is one of the few ingredients I changed and did not include it. The recipe had plenty of salt already.
Recipe by cooking with aunt juju https://cookingwithauntjuju.com/2016/03/11/baked-spaghetti/
Another version of “baked spaghetti” is Spaghetti Pie where chefs such as Emeril Lagasse, David Lebovitz and The Smitten Kitchen have shared a different approach using lots of cheese and no meat. Frequently it is baked in a springform pan. This will be next…