Check out a copy of the Godfather, put it on
TV and turn it up loud enough to hear
outside………...if you cook outside like I do.
Pour yourself 6 or 8 glasses of Vino
Rosso………. o Bianco. Assemble a lot of
Italian looking things and begin singing
O Sole Mio or Santa Lucia.
4.A can of Tomatoes…..diced, chopped or
stewed (maybe the kind that already
have Italian seasoning)
5.A can of Pizza Sauce
6. A bunch of Parsley….Italian, Curly or
7.A bunch of Carrots
8.A pound of Ground Beef
9.A little tub of Ricotta Cheese……….you
can also use Cottage Cheese-about 15 oz.
10. About 2 cups or 8 oz. grated
11. About the same amount of Provolone
or an Italian mix. I found a bag by
Kraft with Mozzarella, Provolone,
Romano, Asiago and Parmesan.
12. a large Egg
13. A box of Frozen Spinach……..or
14. Some pitted Olives………..whatever
kind you like.
Note: You can use unseasoned Tomatoes
and Tomato Paste if you want but then you
have to all those Italian Herbs like, Oregano,
Marjoram, Basil, Summer Savory,
Rosemary Sage etc. These days, it’s too easy
to just buy the cans with all that stuff in
them………..and I’m lazy.
As always, I start with Garlic and I haven’t
been bothered by werewolves (or bad
cholesterol) for many a full moon.
I always have plenty of Garlic around and
sometimes I freeze it.
The pieces that have a yellow color have
been frozen……….this doesn’t hurt it.
Roughly chop it and scoot it into a nice
15. Dump in some Olive Oil
………….about enough to cover the Garlic.
(Maybe ¼ inch or so).
Put the heat on low so you don’t burn it
while messing with other stuff. It should
only just begin to brown (no more) when
you turn the heat off. If it’s anymore than
just barely browned, you will discover that
you have a flat tire on your car.
I like manager’s specials………….this is
Cut off about a pound.
Now is when it’s handy to be drinking a
glass of Wine. I’m usually drinking
something i.e. Beer, Brandy, Wine, Saki etc.
when I cook and I just occasionally slosh
some in whatever it is. Add about a glass to
Dump in a little of the Garlic Oil. Don’t put
too much or it will bubble up and spill over
when you have the whole thing in the oven.
Smonch the Garlic into the Meat and put the
heat on about medium or lower.
When the Meat has browned (it will be a
little purple because of the wine), dump in
And also the Pizza Sauce. I’m always
looking for short cuts i.e. pre-grated Cheese,
so I like cans of stuff that already have the
seasoning I need in them. Reduce the heat so
that it all just simmers a little. It needs to
simmer long enough to evaporate most of
While the Meat mess is simmering, chop
plenty of Parsley into itty bitty pieces. I
happened to have some of both kinds today.
Put it in a mixing bowel and add the big fat
Dump in the Ricotta (or Cottage) Cheese.
About now is a good time to put the noodles
in a pan of hot water. It doesn’t have to be
boiling hot but warn enough to penetrate the
noodles. They need to soak a while to get
Since I use frozen Spinach, I microwave it
just enough to defrost but not get too hot.
While the spinach is defrosting, coarsely
chop some Carrots.
Cover them with water in a nice Green Pan
and out the heat on medium. They need to
cook until just barely soft……….resist a
fork a little. Pour off any water that’s left.
Dump the Spinach in the Ricotta mess.
And beat the whammy out of the whole
When most of the water has evaporated off
the Carrots, smonch them roughly with a
Potato masher. I like things to be a little
Add the Carrots to the Meat mess stir it
around a little and turn off the heat.
Pour a little of the Garlic Oil into a baking
dish. Put jus enough to barely cover the
bottom or the oil and liquid will make a
mess in the oven later.
Make a layer of the Meat mess in the dish.
Use half of the meat.
Make a layer of Noodles over the Meat. The
noodles need to be wet and a little soft, so if
they are not yet, heat the water a little and
move them around until they are.
Make a layer of the Cheese mess over the
noodles. Use half of it.
Crumple in some Olives. I like things to be
lumpy so I don’t crumple them too much.
It’s getting late in the day by now and
Possum will have smelled what you are
doing and be very interested. Do not trust
her grin. She is not sincere and will try to
steal something when you go into the house.
Add a layer of the Provolone; Mozzarella
etc. Use half of it. The final layer goes on
Add the rest of the Meat mess.
Make another layer of Noodles and a layer
of the rest of the Cheese-Spinach mess.
Add the last of the Provolone-Mozzarella etc.
Spread it around nicely.
And cover the whole mess with tinfoil. Now
you could keep in the refrigerator until just
before your guests arrive if you want too.
If its wintertime, you could keep it outside
but if you do, you better cover it with a wash
tub or something. Sometimes I use the
outside grill, which has a lid, to keep things
refrigerated in winter.
Put it in a preheated, 350° oven.
Make some nice Garlic Bread.
And put that in there too.
Bake it for 20-25 minuets and when the
cheese on top is melted remove the tinfoil.
Bake another 20-25 minuets until the cheese
starts to brown a little.
Serve it with a nice little salad that has
Be sure to remember the Garlic Bread in the
oven and have plenty of Wine.
If there’s still some in the fridge after three
or four days, possum can have it.