Family Recipes for the Brand New Cook

All About Pasta

Basic Spaghetti Sauce

Ingredients: 5-6 cloves of fresh garlic minced

4-5 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 Large can tomatoes

1 teaspoon salt

1) Pour olive oil into a heavy sauce pot and on low heat saute garlic. Cook for a few minutes stirring frequently.

2) Add dried basil and oregano to garlic

3) Add tomatoes and stir

4) Then fill the empty tomato can with water and add to sauce.

5) Add salt

6) Keep on low-medium heat stirring every half-hour. Sauce should bubble a little but you don't ever want it to boil furiously.

7) Simmer sauce for at least 5 hours. You may need to add a bit more water as it cooks down.

8) BIG RULE FOR SAUCE: Don't ever let it burn! If you go to stir your sauce and it sticks to the bottom of the pan start over! It will taste bitter.

This recipe can be doubled or tripled as needed!


Ingredients: Prepare a double batch of sauce either same day or day before

1 box of "no boil lasagna noodles"

1 large container of ricotta cheese

1 large (biggest they've got) container of Romano or Parmesan

2 bags of shredded mozzarella (2 cup's per package)

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 egg

1) You'll need a 13 "x 9" baking pan.

2) Empty ricotta into a large bowl

3) Add one egg to ricotta. Mix well

4) Add cinnamon to ricotta mixture

5) Add 1/2 cup Romano or Parmesan cheese to ricotta. Mix well.

6) Then pour enough sauce into the baking pan to completely cover the bottom

7) Then layer 3 lasagna noodles on the bottom leaving a little room in-between them because they expand when they cook.

8) Then pour enough sauce onto each lasagna noodle to cover them completely.

9) Then sprinkle a 1/4 cup of Parmesan onto covered noodles

10) Then taking big spoonfuls of ricotta mixture, place them over noodles:

11) Then sprinkle a large handful of mozzarella over the whole thing

12) Continue layering until you run out of noodles or space!

13) On your last layer, just sprinkle the top with Parmesan. If you use the ricotta or mozzarella on top it will burn.

14) Then cover your masterpiece with tin foil

15) And bake in a 350 oven for 1 hour. Remove the tin foil for the last 15 minutes of baking.

This will serve a house full of people, especially if you serve it with garlic bread and a big salad!

Vegetarian Meatballs

Ingredients: 1 package Morningstar farm Harvest Burgers recipe crumbles (you will find this in the frozen foods section)

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups Parmesan or Romano cheese

1 cup flavored breadcrumbs

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon olive oil

1) Dump package of vegetarian meat crumbles into a bowl. (You can microwave it for 1 minute to take the chill off)

2) Add eggs, garlic powder, cheese and breadcrumbs. Mix well

3) Try to make a ball out of mixture. If it's too dry and you can't get the stuff to stick, add another egg.

4) Make each ball whatever sized meatballs you want

5) Pour olive oil onto baking pan and spread around the pan with your hands.

6) Place meatballs on a baking pan

7) Place in 350 oven for about a half-hour.

8) You can then add the meatballs to your sauce or eat them dry.

These make excellent sandwiches especially on a sub roll. Slice the meatballs and place in sauce, heat the sauce and then put meatballs and sauce on a roll with a slice of provolone cheese! Delicious!


1) When cooking boxed pasta do it according to the directions on the box! (If you try to cook pasta in too little water it comes out very sticky)

2) Taste test pasta frequently and when it is a little chewy, it is done!

3) Always remember your mama when you eat it

Roasted Chicken and Potatoes

Ingredients: 1 small purdue oven stuffer roaster chicken with a pop up thing to tell you when its done

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon paprika powder

4 strips of turkey bacon

1/4 cup olive oil

5 medium sized potatoes peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes

1 package chicken gravy mix

1) Remove chicken from packaging. Be sure you don't contaminate any of your counter tops with raw chicken. It usually contains salmonella and you can get the whole household sick if you touch raw chicken to any surface that someone will later eat off of.

2) Wash the chicken under warm tap water.

3) Pat dry with a paper towel

4) Rub chicken with a teaspoon of olive oil

5) Rub 1/2 teaspooon garlic powder into chicken (Or you can cut a clove of fresh garlic and rub that into your chicken)

6) Then sprinkle paprika onto chicken evenly

7) Place strips of bacon over chicken, but be sure you leave your pop up thermometer so you can see when it pops!

8) Place chicken in 350 oven

9) After about one hour of baking time, place your peeled and cubed potatoes in a large mixing bowl. Add the rest of your garlic powder to them and add the olive oil and mix well

10) Then carefully add the potatoes to your roasting chicken. It is easy to burn yourself doing this so I recommend you take the chicken right out of the oven and place on the stove top while doing this. Replace in oven.

11) Continue cooking chicken until the thingy pops up. (I usually stir the potatoes once while cooking, but this is not necessary)

12) When you've removed chicken from oven, let it stand for about 5 minutes, then carefully remove it from pan and place on serving tray.

13) For gravy: Remove the colorful pan drippings (the stuff that looks brown) Get as much as that as you can and place in a separate small pan. Then add one package of chicken gravy mix and mix according to directions!

The roast potatoes are easiest to make, but if you prefer you can make mashed potatoes instead!

Mashed Potatoes for Four

Ingredients: 8 medium sized potatoes

1/2 stick of butter

1/2 cup milk

1) Peel potatoes and place in a large pan of boiling water

2) Boil approximately 1/2-3/4 of an hour (until potatoes can be easily pierced with a knife or fork)

3) Drain potatoes

4) Leave in pan.

5) Mash potatoes well either using a mixer or potato masher

6) Add butter

7) Add milk


Frozen peas or fresh cut green beans go well with this meal. Just follow directions on package of frozen peas to cook or if your using fresh, beans or peas, steam or boil for about 10 minutes

Mama's Homemade Biscuits

Not everyone likes homemade biscuits but for those of us who do, they are totally worth the effort!

Ingredients: 2 Cups white flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoons baking powder

5 Tablespoons butter

3/4 cup of milk

1) Mix flour, salt and baking powder well

2) Add butter and "cut" butter and dry mixture together using two knives or you can use a mixing whisk

3) When mixture looks like crumbles, Add milk all at once and mix,

4) When it is all blobs together, add a little flour (not a lot) just enough to make it workable and spread dough on counter about 3/4-1 inch thick using your hands. Try not to over-handle the dough. Spread out to the thickness you want for biscuits (I like mine about 3/4 of an inch thick)

5) Cut with a cutter or a glass for biscuits the size you want

6) Place on un-greased baking sheet close together so that biscuits touch each other (they are very friendly) and bake at 450 for 12-15 minutes- or until golden brown on top.

Cranberry sauce goes very nicely with a chicken dinner too!

Chicken and Olives

Ingredients: Chicken parts. Bone in breasts work well

1 lb of large green olives (found in deli section at supermarket)

1 teaspoon of garlic powder

1 teaspoon of oregano

1/8 cup olive oil

1) Sprinkle chicken parts with olive oil, garlic powder and oregano

2) Place in a baking pan

3) Pour olives all over chicken

4) Bake at 350 for one hour.

Homemade Pizza

Ingredients: One package of either frozen bread dough or 1 package of prepared pizza dough that you can buy at Market Basket

For Sauce: 1 small can of Hunts tomato sauce

3 cloves fresh garlic

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1/4 teaspoon basil and oregano

Cook using same directions as for other sauce but you

Only need to simmer for about an hour

(OR you can use leftover spaghetti sauce!)

1 package mozarrella

1) Spread dough out on a large cookie sheet. (Don't grease sheet or dough won't spread) You can put a little flour down on cookie sheet.

2) Spread sauce over pizza dough

3) Sprinkle cheese

4) Bake at 450 preheated oven

Grilled Portabello Mushrooms

Ingredients: 1 large container of either sliced or whole mushrooms

1/4 cup tamari sauce (can be found in the oriental section of grocery store)

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon honey (if you have it-if not, its not that important

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1) A few hours before you fire up the grill, wash and pat dry your mushrooms

2) Then in a small bowl, mix your tamari, and spices with the honey and olive oil

3) Then pour mixture over mushrooms and let stand at room temperature for a few hours, making sure both sides of mushrooms get soaked in sauce

4) (You make need to make another batch of sauce)

5) Fire up grill.

6) Place mushrooms on grill

7) Turn frequently. It also doesn't hurt to brush mushrooms with more marinade sauce from time to time

Serve with fresh garden salad and a homemade potato salad

Potato Salad

10 medium potato's

3 eggs

1 large onion

1 package good seasons Italian dressing

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup vinegar

1 large jar Hellmans Mayonaise


1) Fill a large sauce pot with cold water. Add eggs and potatoes. Boil potatoes in their skins.

2) When you can easily stick a knife or fork into them, remove them from the stove

3) Dump boiling water into sink

4) Fill pan with cold water. You may need to do this several times because the hot potatoes make the cold water hot again.

5) When potatoes are cool enough to handle, remove skins. They come off easily once they've been boiled.

6) Once they've been peeled, cut potatoes into bite sized pieces and put in a large bowl. (I usually cut them as I've finished peeling each one. They sometimes fall apart as you peel them)

7) Once all potatoes are cut, then peel your onion and shred it into your potato mixture.

8) Then sprinkle good seasons mixture packet into your potatoes

9) Add oil and vinegar

10) Mix well

11) Cut hard boiled eggs into potatoes

12) Add polonaise to taste. (Some like more than others)

13) Sprinkle paprika on top to look pretty

Macaroni Salad

1 box elbow macaroni

2 eggs

2 medium sized green peppers

1 large onion

1 seedless cucumber

1 very lovely tomato

And anything else you can think of to add! Some suggestions:



Lightly steamed broccoli

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup vinegar

1 packet Good Seasons Italian dressing mix


1) Boil macaroni and eggs.

2) As soon as pasta is cooked run it under cold water and keep it there until fully cooled

3) Dice green peppers, cucumbers and tomato (and any other veggies your adding)

4) Grate the onion into the bowl (you can do this separately and then add after)

5) Drain pasta and add to onion and veggies.

6) Sprinkle Good Seasons Italian dressing onto pasta

7) Add oil and vinegar and mix well

8) Slice up eggs to put in salad.

9) Add mayonnaise to taste

10) Sprinkle some paprika to make it look pretty

Broccoli Quiche

1 Pillsbury pre-made pie crust (you can find this in the dairy section of supermarket)

1 head of fresh broccoli

5 fresh garlic cloves

5 fresh eggs

1 cup milk (can be any kind-whole, skim or even cream if you like!)

1/2 cup parmesan cheese

3 Tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup provolone cheese (any kind of cheese can be used here)

1) Wash broccoli. Peel stems. Steam until tender

2) Let broccoli cool.

3) Pour oil in frying pan. Chop garlic and add to oil. Saute gently being sure not to brown garlic.

4) Then chop broccoli up into bite sized pieces and add to oil and garlic

5) Let simmer 5-10 minutes over low heat.

6) Then remove your pie crust from refrigerator. Place it in a pie plate being sure you squeeze pastry together where there are any gaps.

7) Spread broccoli and garlic mixture evenly in pie plate

8) Spread cheeses evenly over mixture

9) In a separate bowl, add eggs and milk and beat together

10) Then pour eggs into pie plate and sprinkle with a little paprika

11) Put tin foil around the edges of the pie plate for first 3/4 of an hour of baking in a 425 oven. Then remove tin foil for last 15 minutes of baking. You can reduce the temperature of the oven if it looks like its baking too fast.

12) You can tell if quiche is done by poking it with a knife and having the knife come back clean.

A taste of India

Vegetable Curry

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 medium to large sized onions diced

9 cloves of fresh garlic minced

1" piece of fresh ginger minced

3 Tablespoons curry powder

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 large green pepper diced

1 cup frozen (or fresh) peas

4 medium sized potatoes

1/2 cup real sour cream

1) Saute onions and garlic and ginger together over low/medium heat

2) When onions look transparent, add curry powder and cinnamon and continue cooking even if the curry powder sort of sticks to the pan

3) After 5 minutes, add the peppers peas and potatoes. Cook 5 more minutes

4) Then add 1 cup water

5) Cover pan

6) Simmer over low/medium heat covered for about half to three quarters of an hour

7) Then remove cover and continue cooking over low heat until the color of the curry starts to darken a bit.

8) Just prior to serving add the sour cream to the curry but don't continue to cook otherwise it will curdle. (This step is optional)

9) Serve with Basmati rice


1 hand full of wheat flour

1 hand full of white flour (same sized hand fulls)

1 tsp salt

3 TBSP oil

1) Mix the two flours together

2) Then make a well in the middle of the flour.

3) Pour oil in well

4) Then pour enough water in the well to make a dough.

5) Knead the dough for approximately 10 minutes

6) Set in a bowl with a wet towel covering it, preferably in a warm sunny location.

7) After dough has set for 1 hour, then take a pinch of dough enough to make a very small sized meatball with and roll into a ball

8) Pour a small dish of oil that you can put on the counter, so you can roll the ball out onto the oiled counter.

9) Roll ball into a flat round disk.

10) Then heat oil in a frying pan. Enough oil to deep fry. (about 2 inches deep)

11) Set stove at medium high heat. When you think oil is hot, try throwing a drop of water into it. If it sizzles and pops, your oil is ready to rock and roll

12) Then place your dough disk in the oil

13) Pat the Puri using a spatula. The puri should begin to puff out like a blowfish.

14) After a minute on one side flip it over and cook another minute on the other side.

15) Remove from oil and drain oil off before serving.