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Published: Sunday, 6/12/2011

Plan for leftovers with spaghetti dish

BY ALICIA ROSS, WITH BEVERLY MILLS
DESPERATION DINNERS

What do you do with leftovers? Do you ever intentionally plan for them? I do, and I freeze them. Especially when I'm testing recipes, I often end up with a batch or two of the same soup or sauce, and there's no way I can consume it by myself. (Nor do I really want to.) So my freezer is beginning to look like my grandmother's did. She had an entire upright freezer filled with assorted soups, sauces, pies, quiches, and cakes ready to be shared with friends. Whether it was food to give a sick friend, welcome a new baby, or take to a funeral lunch, my grandmother had it covered.

Today's recipe for Italian Sausage Spaghetti is perfect to enjoy with your family -- or you can freeze it for sharing later on. You also can double or triple the sauce and invite a bunch of friends over to savor. It's even easy to cut the recipe in half for just two or three.

Whether you share this meal through your freezer or across the table, it's sure to satisfy.

Contact Beverly Mills and Alicia Ross at Desperation Dinners, c/o United Media, 200 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10016, or send e-mail to tellus@kitchenscoop.com.

Italian Sausage Spaghetti

Start to finish: 20 minutes preparation, 30 minutes to simmer

12 ounces spaghetti

8 ounces ground sirloin

8 ounces mild Italian sausage, casings removed

1 cup finely chopped onion

1 cup finely chopped fresh mushrooms

3 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1/2 cup finely chopped Italian (flat-leaf) parsley

1 large can (35 ounces) crushed tomatoes with basil

1/4 cup dry red wine

1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

cubed fresh mozzarella, optional for serving

Bring a pot of water to boil and cook the spaghetti according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, begin cooking the beef and sausage in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, mushrooms, garlic, and parsley. Cook until the meat is crumbled and cooked through, about six minutes. (If there is more than 1 tablespoon of grease in pan, drain excess away by tilting the pan and spooning it out.)

Add the tomatoes, wine, olive oil, sugar, salt, and pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer at least 10 minutes but preferably for 30 minutes to let flavors develop fully.

Serve the sauce over hot cooked spaghetti, garnished with cubed fresh mozzarella, if desired.

Yield: 6 servings

Approximate values per serving: 418 calories (22 percent from fat), 10 g fat (3 g saturated), 34 mg cholesterol, 21 g protein, 57 g carbohydrates, 6 g dietary fiber, 938 mg sodium



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