On a typical Saturday morning, no matter what I am doing, one thing is for certain:  The TV will be on in every room and it will be on one channel….The Food Network Channel.  I find that I can get recipe ideas while I am doing simple household chores and look out for those that catch my eye.  Such is the case last Saturday when Trisha’s Southern Kitchen was airing and her Baked Spaghetti captured my attention!

 Now normally, this is not something that I would be drawn to since Jeff and I process our own homemade spaghetti sauce in the summer.  The Pitt Italian Sauce is hard to beat as a spaghetti option but still something about this recipe seemed tantalizing.  After reading the recipe, it seemed pretty solid but I knew I would have to kick up the flavor just a bit based on our tastes.  The results are in………..

 Adapted from “Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood” by Trisha Yearwood (c) Clarkson Potter 2010

Ingredients (*- my personal additions)

Cooking spray, for greasing pan
6 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped (I used a mix of red, green, and yellow)
Three 14 1/2-ounce cans diced tomatoes with liquid
One 2 1/4-ounce can sliced black olives, drained
1 to 2 tablespoons dried oregano
*Salt (to taste)
*Pepper (to taste)
*I tbsp Onion Powder
*1tbsp Red Pepper Flakes
1 pound ground beef, browned and drained
12 ounces thin spaghetti, cooked and drained
2 cups grated cheddar (5 ounces)
One 10-ounce can cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking dish with cooking spray.  In a large skillet, cook the bacon until slightly crisp. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain.

Sauté the garlic, onion and bell pepper in the bacon drippings until tender. (At this point, I took the liberty of adding salt, pepper, onion powder, and for some hare, a little red pepper flakes. So glad I did! Note: Don’t add red pepper flakes if you will be serving this to children or anyone that may have a sensitive stomach).  Add the tomatoes, olives, oregano, bacon and the cooked ground beef and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes

Place half of the spaghetti in the prepared baking dish; top with half of the vegetable-beef mixture; and sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheddar.   

Repeat the layers. In a bowl, stir together the cream of mushroom soup and 1/4 cup water until smooth, and pour this over the casserole. 

   

  Sprinkle with the Parmesan and bake, uncovered, for 30 to 35 minutes, or until heated through.

  

Bottom Line: This was delicious and other than the addition of a couple of my own ingredients, I wouldn’t change a thing! Thank you, Trisha! Kid-Friendly and Hubby-Approved!!

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