Making Grown-Up Spaghettios! - No. 185
An embellished pasta e ceci that’s easy, too
By KATHLEEN CATHERALL OSTEEN
To me, lunch is a form of self-care.
I said goodbye to my full-time job last spring and have since been freelancing from home in recipe development, content creation and marketing with a few catering gigs here and there. In the midst of getting a kiddo out the door, folding laundry, emptying the dishwasher—oh, and doing my actual *work,* the days quickly slip away.
One thing I do for myself almost every day is make a delicious, satisfying lunch. No one else to please, no one else's dietary preferences to take into account - just me.
This pasta e ceci, which I call "grown-up Spaghettios" because of the ring-shaped pasta, has made its way into my starting lineup of lunch at home. Dinner, too.
It's essentially an Italian stew full of pantry ingredients that comes together in one pot in half an hour. Though most ingredients are found in the pantry, the dish is brightened by flavors like rosemary and lemon.
Campbell Soup created SpaghettiOs in 1965 as something easy and fun for the kids to eat - but this is fun for adults to eat, too. It's been almost two decades since I've had legit ‘’SpaghettiOs,’’ and I can confidently say you won’t miss them.
A few cooking notes so you can own this recipe, too
I'm all about using what you have, so do not go to the store for the cream or tomato paste. If you have them already, use them, but this recipe still holds strong without them.
When you buy tomato paste, opt for it in the tube—not the can. That way you can store it in the fridge, adding a squeeze here-and-there as a great flavor boost to soups and sauces. It needs a few minutes to cook once it hits the pan, so the natural sugars from the tomatoes begin to caramelize and the paste slightly darkens.