Do you remember a time when you were sick or extremely pregnant or too busy to cook because you were taking care of an aging relative?  (I'm sure some of you answered yes to all three.) Well, I know just what you needed most: Angel Food!  It's not that wonderful fluffy cake you're thinking of, I'm talking about a hot cooked meal that someone delivered to your doorstep when you were at your wits end.  That truly is food that comes from your angels: your sister, your        friends, your neighbors or your church family.

      At my church we have an Angel Food ministry.  It's quite simple really, if you are in need, the "head angel" (aka: Peg Aery at St. Peter's in Essex Fells!) is notified by our priest and she rallies the troops (anyone willing to cook, wings and halo aren't required).  Sometimes the angels are just asked for a frozen casserole to fill a freezer, or soup, but sometimes a hot meal is called for...and I got the call this week.  

      My specialty is baked ziti.  It's not hard to do and I always make 2 or 3 times the recipe so I have some extra frozen zitis in my freezer.

      Try my recipe and think about making an extra pan for a friend or neighbor who could use a little love from your kitchen...be their angel.

To make one large pan you'll need:

1 pound of ziti noodles
3-4 Cups of shredded cheese (mozzarella or I like to use a mixed bag with 4 cheeses including cheddar)

For the sauce:

1 onion diced
1 pepper diced
1 zucchini cut up
A little olive oil
1 pound of ground beef or turkey
1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
1 6 oz can of tomato paste
Either 1 jar of store bought sauce or 2-3 cups of homemade sauce

Cook the ziti until aldente.  At the same time...
Brown the ground beef in a pan, drain fat, set aside.
In the bottom of a big pot sauté the veggies until they soften (5 minutes) add the beef, and tomato sauces and heat on a low flame.  When the pasta is done and the sauce is bubbly prepare the pan.  Spread half the ziti in the bottom of the pan and cover with half the sauce and top with half the cheese.  Repeat.  If you're baking right away cook 375 for 20-30 minutes.  If not, wrap and store in fridge until ready to bake, then bake 1 hour at 375.  If you freeze the ziti be sure to thaw completely before you bake.


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