Spaghetti Sauce

  • 2 pounds 85 percent ground beef
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon basil
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 15-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 2 large cans crushed tomatoes
  • 15-ounce can tomato paste

Brown ground beef and onion together. Drain. Mix in all of the spices. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes on medium heat. Stir often to avoid sticking to pan.

Add tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes and brown sugar. Simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.

Add tomato paste and stir until mixture thickens. Serve over pasta.

Recipe by Gertrude Treadaway

Savory Zucchini Muffins

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ½ cup sun-dried tomato pesto
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¾ cup milk
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 2 green onions, finely chopped
  • 12 1/2-inch cubes fontina cheese

Heat oven to 400 F. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and pepper. In a separate bowl, whisk 1/4 cup pesto, olive oil, milk, sugar and egg. Stir into flour mixture until moistened. Fold in zucchini and green onions.

Divide half the batter evenly among muffin cups. Place a cube of fontina on top of batter. Top each with 1 teaspoon remaining pesto, then top with remaining batter.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown and top of muffin springs back when pressed lightly. Let cool slightly. Serve warm.

To make extra savory, add 1/2 cup cooked and crumbled bacon.

Recipe courtesy of Filippo Berio

Pasta With Spinach Pesto

  • 13.5-ounce can spinach, well drained
  • 1 cup fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup walnuts or almonds
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 16 ounces fettuccine noodles

In a food processor, combine spinach, parsley, cheese, nuts, garlic, basil, salt and pepper. Blend well. In a slow, steady stream, add olive oil until mixture is blended and smooth.

Cook fettuccine per package directions. Drain. Toss pesto with fettuccine.

Recipe courtesy of CMI

Potato Leek Soup With Pesto

  • 3 medium-large leeks
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large garlic clove, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional to taste
  • 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced into 2-inch cubes
  • 6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • Pesto
  • 1 packed cup fresh basil
  • 1 packed cup flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 medium-large garlic clove, roughly chopped
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts or 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Trim bulb ends and tough, dark green stems off leeks. Slice tender white and light green stems in half lengthwise, then soak in cold water for 10 to 15 minutes to remove dirt. Drain leeks, rinse well and slice into thick half-moons.

In a large stockpot over medium-low heat, heat olive oil. Add leeks, garlic and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until leeks are soft, about 10 minutes.

Add potatoes and broth. Cover and increase heat to medium. Bring soup to simmer. Uncover and continue cooking for 30 minutes.

Using an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth. Taste and add more salt if desired.

To make pesto, pulse basil, parsley, garlic, pine nuts, salt and olive oil in a food processor.

Ladle soup into bowls and spoon pesto on top of each serving.

Recipe courtesy of Carapelli

Sicilian Lamb Meatballs

  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons golden raisins
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Feta-Olive Oil Sauce

  • 1/2 pound feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt

Heat oven to 375 F. Line a large-rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix lamb, olive oil, panko breadcrumbs, pine nuts, raisins, egg, salt and pepper. Roll mixture into approximately 36 meatballs about 1 inch in diameter and place on baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, until sizzling and golden brown.

To make feta-olive oil spread, blend feta cheese, olive oil and yogurt in a food processor for 30 to 45 seconds, until creamy. Serve with meatballs for dipping.

Recipe courtesy of Carapelli

Cranberry Strata

  • 8 cups crusty French bread cubes
  • 8-ounce package cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 6 eggs
  • 2¼ cups milk
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon or nutmeg

In a greased 2-quart rectangular baking dish, arrange half of the bread pieces.

Cut cream cheese into 8 to 10 slices and arrange over the bread cubes. Sprinkle cranberries over bread. Top with remaining bread pieces.

In a medium bowl, beat together eggs, milk and maple syrup. Pour over bread in dish. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon. Lightly press down with the back of a spoon to saturate bread with egg mixture.

Cover and chill for up to 24 hours.

Heat oven to 350 F. Bake covered for 45 minutes. Uncover, then bake for 20 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Serve warm and topped with syrup.

Recipe courtesy of