This is Betty's Original Spaghetti Pie : Spaghetti with tomato paste pushed into a pie pan into like a crust and then you put in layers of ground beef, mozzarella cheese and a secret ingredient layer in the center : Cottage Cheese. I know. I know. Please don't tear her apart too much in the comments. We all do weird shit.
As many of you know, my mom is Sicilian and I grew up eating lots of baked pasta dishes. So my version of Spaghetti Pie is a little off the Betty map BUT really it is quite delicious, not too unhealthy and not the Crayola colored vision that the Betty recipe is. I admit that this version of Spaghetti Pie kinda came kind of naturally to me - like that little part of you that knows the lyrics to songs you awkwardly slow danced to with someone you don't remember like a lifetime ago. I hope if you were expecting the other pie - you can find a place in your heart for this version which will rock your face* - in a good way. Just try it.
Heat oven to 375.
- 3/4 Package Whole Wheat Spaghetti
- 15 oz Can Tomato Sauce
- 3 Tomatoes (diced)
- 2-3 Stalks Celery (diced)
- 1/2 Cup Red Wine (you're going to need a splash for cooking the Boca Crumbles later)
- 2 Cloves Garlic (minced)
- 3 Pinches Celery Seed
- 1/4 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1/4 Teaspoon Oregano (dried - you'll some extra to sprinkle over the top)
- 2 Tablespoons Braggs
- 1/4 Teaspoon Parsley (fresh and diced)
- 2 Teaspoons Basil (fresh and diced)
- 1 Green Bell Pepper (diced)
- 1 Red Onion (diced)
- 1 Package Boca Crumbles (really any fake ground beef will work - I really like the Boca Crumbles. If you haven't tried them - really you should. Litelife Smart Ground is also a favorite. )
- 2 Tablespoons Nutirtional Yeast
- 1 Package Firm Tofu (mashed)
- 1 -2 Cups Daiya Mozzarella Cheese (we had like a small handful of Cheddar leftover from another meal so I threw that on top of the Mozzarella)
- Olive Oil for cooking
In a saucepan, add Tomato Sauce, Tomatoes, Celery, Red Wine, Garlic, Celery Seed, Garlic Powder, Oregano, Braggs, Parsley & Basil and let simmer on a medium heat. Stir occasionally and once it starts to bubble - gently mash the Tomatoes a bit with your spoon.
Cook Spaghetti per the instructions on the box. Make sure when you drain it - you get most of the water out.
In your trusty little cast iron skillet, heat Olive Oil ( about 2-3 Tablespoons) and a dash of Red Wine on a medium heat. Add Green Peppers and Boca Crumbles and stir to cover with hot oil. When it starts to brown, add the Red Onions. While the Crumble mix is browning, mix the Nutritional Yeast and mashed Tofu. Add the Tofu mix to the browning Crumble Mix. Keep flipping the Crumble mix till it browns completely. If it starts to stick - add another dash of Red Wine.
Once the Crumble mix starts to have crispy edges and the Red Onion is transparent, pour the sauce into the skillet and heat. Stir occasionally. Once it starts to boil, remove from heat.
Put the cooked Spaghetti in a large bowl. With a slotted spoon, add Saucy Crumble mix to the Spaghetti and toss. Make sure it gets thoroughly mixed.
Now add the Spaghetti mix to a glass pie plate. Really push it in there. Once you have filled the plate - with a little pie like mound in the middle - cover the top Daiya Cheese - push the Daiya in there too. Sprinkle the top with dried Oregano and put in the oven.
Let it bake around 20-30 minutes. Pull out your pie when the cheese is melted and starts to brown a bit. Slice up like a pie and EAT!
LEFTOVER TIP : You may notice you have a lot of sauce/liquid leftover in the sauce pan. The extra moisture will make your pie mushy so you can't use it in the pie but I made the rest of the package of Whole Wheat Spaghetti and mixed it with that and a can of Artichoke Hearts. It was a great lunch.
Garlic Bread ( I feel bad posting this as a "recipe" but sometimes you have to just go with things)
Preheat oven to 350.
- 1 Baguette (sliced in half and cut into desired pieces)
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic per piece of Bread (minced)
- Oregano (dried - to sprinkle over the top)
Spread a "healthy" as in LARGE amount of Margarine on each slice of bread and then spread the Garlic over that. Put int he oven pull it out when the Margarine is melted and it is browned. Sprinkle with Oregano.
*You had to see that coming.