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A Traditional Italian Holiday Meal (Simplified)

A Traditional Italian Holiday Meal (Simplified)

We're calling it a traditional Italian holiday meal, but if we wanted to be really traditional, we'd add about 5 more courses. Ours is a simplified version (just the main course and dessert), but you can never really go wrong with fresh, authentic ingredients.

Baked Cannelloni 

Ingredients:

Serves 4 to 6

  • 1 24 oz. jar Monte Bene Tomato Basil pasta sauce
  • 8 cannelloni
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 10 oz. container ricotta cheese
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 ½ cups Pecorino Romano, grated
  • 1 cup Mozzarella, grated
  • 5 tbsp. white wine
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350. Heat olive oil in a medium sized skillet over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and garlic and simmer until onion is translucent. Add beef and stir well. Pour in the white wine and increase heat to let the alcohol burn off. Add salt and pepper and set aside. Meanwhile, boil cannelloni until not quite al dente. Drain and place in an 11X7 baking dish, making sure the cannelloni do not stick together. Spoon meat mixture into a large bowl. Stir in ricotta, ¼ cup Mozzarella and 1 cup Pecorino Romano cheeses. Add about 1 cup of Monte Bene Tomato Basil pasta sauce. Once combined, spoon filling mixture into cannelloni, being careful not to over-stuff the pasta. Place in a row in the baking dish. Top with remaining Monte Bene Tomato Basil pasta sauce and Mozzarella cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until sauce is bubbly and cheese is completely melted. Plate and top with extra Pecorino Romano cheese.

Easy Tiramisu 

Ingredients:

Serves 4 to 6

  • 8 oz. Mascarpone cheese
  • 8 oz. heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 12 ladyfingers
  • 1/2-1 cup espresso
  • 2 tbsp. amaretto liquor
  • 3 tsp. baking cocoa

Preparation:

Beat Mascarpone cheese and powdered sugar together until well blended. Add whipping cream and beat until stiff peaks form. Add liquor and mix gently until fully combined. Pour the espresso into a small bowl and dip each side of the ladyfinger into the espresso for a few seconds (dip for a longer time for softer cookies). Create one layer of lady fingers in an 8X8X2 baking dish. Top with a  layer of cream. Create another layer of espresso-dipped lady fingers and finish with another layer of cream. Sprinkle with baking cocoa. Cover and refrigerate for 3-4 hours or until filling is set. Serve with fresh raspberries or blue berries and an after dinner drink.

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