Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tomato Soup Spaghetti

This recipe is for my dad-- the man who taught me how to golf, who passed on to me a love for chemistry, who is the strongest (and tallest) person I know, and who showed me how much joy a person can have while cooking in a kitchen. He was our short order cook on Saturday mornings asking what type of eggs we wanted (I typically went for an omelet with velveeta cheese but I did enjoy when he made homemade egg mcmuffins). He would spend Sunday afternoons cooking his old family recipe for meat marinara sauce and assembling lasagnas for the freezer (he would even put mushrooms only on half of the lasagna so my sister wouldn't have to pick them out). He would never let my mom's birthday pass without a homemade cherry pie or Thanksgiving pass without a homemade apple pie (and pecan and pumpkin pies too).

He taught me this ridiculously easy yet delicious meal. Whenever I call him on my way home from work for inspiration for dinner, he always suggests tomato soup spaghetti. He calls it the "poor man's spaghetti" because he started making it when he was a poor college student; my mom always argues that it is ruining a perfectly good can of tomato soup. I call it great. It is comfort food that reminds me of my dad. You should give it a whirl.

And don't forget to spend time in the kitchen with your kids (or future kids) even if it is over a can of tomato soup. You will be teaching them so much more than recipes.

Tomato Soup Spaghetti
2 servings spaghetti noodles (whole wheat or thin spaghetti works as well)
1 can condensed tomato soup
1 tbsp shredded cheddar cheese (or 1 slice American cheese)*
7-8 ounces turkey sausage or kielbasa, cut into 1/3 inch slices**

Boil the noodles as indicated on the package. Drain and return to the pot.

Meanwhile, cook the sausage in a skillet over medium heat about 5 minutes until heated through, flipping over halfway through.

Add the tomato soup (do not add water or milk or anything) to the noodles and heat over medium heat. Mix in the cheese and sausage. Cook until hot.

Serves 2.

*Cheese adds a little bit of creaminess to the recipe although you certainly do not have to add it.

**You can leave out the sausage if you don't have it in the fridge. If you have some deli ham, add that instead. Or skip the meat all together. Never, never, under any circumstance should you add vegetables, especially green vegetables. My dad will hunt you down for even considering that.

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