Back to School Eats: Auntie Tina Pasta Stuff

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August is officially upon us and nearly over. First: where has the time gone?!? Second: FAAAAALLLLLLL (!!!!!!) is coming, and I couldn’t be more excited.

When August rears its ugly head, that usually means school is about to start. While I’m not in school anymore, I still sympathize with all you pupils out there and hope you can appreciate a quick-easy meal that takes limited amount of time to get on the table.

Our first back to school recipe is something that my Auntie Tina used to make for my cousins and me when we were small. It never had an official name, and part of me thinks she made it up because all the ingredients were in her cupboard/fridge and had a house full of kids complaining about being hungry. Since it never had a name, my family has always called it “Auntie Tina Pasta Stuff”. It’s a staple in my kitchen and I seem to always have the ingredients on hand. When I’ve made it for people outside of my family, they always attempt to name it. I’ve had one call it “pizza pasta” but nothing has ever stuck. This recipe will forever be known as Auntie Tina Pasta Stuff, and I welcome you to call it this as well, even if you don’t have an Auntie Tina.

It’s a simple recipe that holds up on its own, or can be served with a salad. It’s a great one-pot meal, with minimal preparation. With only one pot to wash, it’s considered a “win” in my house. When cooking pasta, it is always recommended you add salt to the boiling water in order to flavor the pasta. The water should be salty like the sea, and will prevent your pasta from being bland. Don’t worry about your dish being overly salty, you’ll drain the water away and be left with perfectly cooked and well seasoned pasta.
 

Ingredients

Ingredients

Ingredients:
1lb of bow-tie pasta, or penne
1lb package of frozen or fresh broccoli
1 package of pepperoni, small or full sized cut in half
1lb block of Munster Cheese shredded or cubed
2-3 Tbsp of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Bring pot of water to boil, and add a good amount of salt. Add in the pasta and allow to cook.

Adding salt to your boiling water...

Adding salt to your boiling water...

2. When pasta is ¾ of the way done, about 8-10 minutes, add the broccoli (fresh or frozen) to the pot with the pasta.

Adding your broccoli

Adding your broccoli

3. Allow the broccoli and pasta to finish cooking together, about another 3-5 minutes.
4. While the pasta is cooking, shred or cube up your Munster cheese. If using full sized pepperoni, cut them in half.
5. Strain pasta and broccoli in a colander and return to hot pan, drizzling with olive oil.
6. While pasta is still hot, add pepperoni and cheese to the pot.

Everyone in the pot!

Everyone in the pot!

7. Mix well, and cover to allow residual heat to melt cheese.

Covered and ready to melt!

Covered and ready to melt!

8. Serve and enjoy!

Melted and ready to eat!

Melted and ready to eat!


Join me next time for an easy Crock Pot Beef Stew!