Tag Archives: Noodles

Cheap Recipe: All-Star Turkey Noodle Pie

6 Apr

For a printable version of this recipe and complete ingredients listing, click here.

All-Star Turkey Noodle Pie

This whimsical idea for leftovers wins over my picky toddler--he cleans his plate and asks for seconds!

This is a great use for leftover turkey after holidays or a big family dinner. You can use the cooked meat straight out of the freezer, too, so you can wait until you’re not sick of poultry anymore to pull out this recipe.

In a large pot, bring 4 cups of broth, boullion or salted water to rapid boil. (Snaps to you if you saved the turkey stock from its original meal!)

Veggies & pasta.

Any veggies or pasta will do. Try mixing it up with alphabet pasta & cutting ABC's into piecrust for another kid-friendly idea.

After liquid reaches a boil, add 1 cup tiny pasta (I love little stars or alphabet pasta) and reduce heat. If you’re shopping at a discount grocery store and can’t find an appropriate pasta, you can easily substitute thin spaghetti broken into one-inch pieces.

A cup of dry pasta.

Twinkle, twinkle, little stars...

Allow pasta to simmer about 3 minutes (you don’t want to fully cook it at this point). Stir in a 12-ounce package of frozen vegetables. My store carries an inexpensive house brand Mirepoix variety containing chopped onions, celery and carrots, which is perfect, but, really, any veggies will do.

meat, pasta, veggies & broth

Don't overcook the filling--remember, it still has to bake!

Simmer with vegetables about 2-3 minutes and add 2 cups cooked turkey pieces (frozen or thawed). Stir until mostly heated (about 3 minutes).

Remove mixture from heat and stir in 1 tablespoon cornstarch and ¼ cup flour. Leave mixture uncovered to cool and thicken.


Use flour & cornstarch to thicken the filling before adding to pie.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. You can use a refrigerated ready-made double pie crust or make your own homemade crust.

bottom crust

The bottom crust.

Roll out one 9-inch pie crust and place it in the bottom of a pie pan. Use flour as necessary.

(I stink at getting the refrigerated crusts to unroll without botching them all up with holes, so I usually just mash the whole thing into a ball, flour a cookie sheet, and press it back out to the appropriate size and thickness I need.)

The noodle filling.

The noodle filling.

Spoon cooled filling mixture into pie crust until nearly level with pan. Pat filling with the back of your spoon to distribute it evenly.

Utterly divine.

Turkey noodles on toast!

If there’s leftover filling mixture, save it for a lunch and eat it on toast. It is RIDICULOUSLY good on toast. (No kidding.)

Place a second pie crust over top of filling and press edges to form a seam; flute edges as desired.

cookie cutter venting

Use a cookie cutter to create attractive piecrust vents.

Star pie crust vent.

Leave the center intact if you used a big cookie cutter.

Either cut four slits in top crust to vent or press a large cookie cutter into the top until crust surface is fully penetrated. Leave center cookie-cutter shape in place.

My ugly crusts...

My dad, the family pastry artisan, would demand a paternity test if he ever saw my terrible edgework!

(This is a great ruse to detract attention from an ugly outer crust if you’re as terrible at fluting edges as I am.)

Place pie pan on a cookie sheet and bake for 30-35 minutes or until crust is golden.

Sliced turkey noodle pie

I'm always amazed at how well the pieces hold together, even warm!

Remove from oven; allow pie to cool several minutes on wire rack either on tabletop or in refrigerator.

Slice and serve; refrigerate any leftovers.


Cheap Recipe: Pasta con Spinaci (Pasta with spinach)

1 Mar


So simple and so elegant.

This post is almost too easy to call a recipe, but it’s both extremely tasty and very attractive (a double threat in the quick recipe department), so I decided it deserved a little blogospheric real estate after all.

Bring some salted water to a boil in a large pasta pot. Add 12 to 16 ounces any kind of pasta, from elbow macaroni to mostaccioli to spaghetti.

How crazy simple is this?

Regulars to this site already know my affinity for rainbow skroodles (sometimes called “garden rotini”), so of course that’s what I used, but to each his own.

Don't let them boil away to mush!

While pasta simmers, thaw a 10- to 12-ounce package of frozen, creamed spinach in the microwave. Continue microwaving until spinach is hot and steaming.

Chef’s Note: Real, honest-to-blog creamed spinach is absolutely divine in this, but if only regular chopped spinach is available at your local grocery store, it will work too–just add 3 tablespoons cream or whole milk to the hot spinach.

When pasta has reached a somewhat firm al dente state (skroodles, especially, seem to retain a good “bite” to them when cooked), remove pot from heat and drain liquid.

Immediately add 1-1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese to hot pasta and stir until melted and evenly distributed.


Add some cheese...

Chef’s Note: The cheese will appear very stringy in the pasta, but that will disappear as soon as you add the creamed spinach, so don’t sweat it. 

Once pasta is coated with cheese, stir in the hot spinach.

Stir in some pretty greens...

Be sure to taste the pasta before adding any additional salt, as the shredded cheese may have already provided some additional sodium.


Serve immediately or refrigerate leftovers. This pasta makes a terrific bed for Sea Scallops Parmesan, Quick Saucy Meatballs or chicken breast!


Cheap Recipe: Beef Stroganoff

21 Oct

For a printable version of this recipe and complete ingredients listing, click here.

This is a favorite old standby of Hubby's.

This is a favorite old standby of Hubby's.

This is a great recipe for weeknights because not only is it made out of regular pantry/freezer items you probably already have, but you can use any cut of beef you want. So, if it’s on sale, it’s stroganoff!

I usually just cut up a cheap beef steak for this dish, but I landed a good deal on a 1-lb. package of stew meat at the deli counter last week, so it stood in (beautifully) for the steak. (You can also use frozen meatballs if they’re on sale; just microwave thaw them and toss them in with the onions and soy sauce stage.)

Brown onion with butter and soy sauce.

Brown onion with butter and soy sauce.

First, chop a yellow onion into big chunks and toss in the bottom of a large pot with 2 tablespoons butter/margarine and about 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce.

Add salt/pepper to taste; stir often over MEDIUM heat until onion is just becoming translucent.

Add meat and begin to brown.

Add meat and begin to brown.

To the onion pot add 1 lb. beef, also cut into large chunks. Continue to stir until meat is mostly (but not all) browned and onions are carmelized.

Pour 1 (10-ounce) can condensed mushroom soup and about 4 cups water

Bring meat and gravy to a simmer.

Bring meat and gravy to a simmer.

into the pot. You can use any variety of mushroom soup; I used Golden Mushroom this time but “Cream of Mushroom” works just as well. Stir very well until soup is diluted.

Add a 4.5-ounce can of mushroom pieces (drained). Increase heat to MEDIUM-HIGH and bring to simmer, stirring often. Once contents of pot begin to bubble, add a 12-ounce bag of egg noodles, any variety.

I really like those square Amish noodles that look like little dumplings–Pennsylvania Dutch is a good brand. But I often just use plain twirly egg noodles. It really doesn’t matter.

The condensed mushroom soup and noodle styles are up to you!

The condensed mushroom soup and noodle styles are up to you!

Throwing in some handfuls of frozen peas gets you out of having to make a side dish!

Throwing in some handfuls of frozen peas gets you out of having to make a side dish!

If desired, stir in about 1 cup frozen peas after adding noodles. Cover and simmer, checking often and stirring to prevent noodles from sticking.

Once noodles have achieved desired doneness, remove pot from heat and let stand a couple of minutes, uncovered, while the sauce thickens.

Dish stroganoff into individual serving bowls. Serve laced with sour cream and chives or mustard for a tangy presentation. Brown-N-Serve rolls are another handy companion.

A dollop of sour cream and chives fancies this bowl right up for only pennies!

A dollop of sour cream and some sprinkled chives fancy this bowl right up for only pennies!