Baked Ziti

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Total Time
2 hrs
1 hr

This is a great recipe for cold days when you crave something warm and delicious. It makes a ton but both the sauce and the pasta freeze well. I am a "dump cook" and don't have exact measures for my sauce recipe - the recipe below is my estimation of what I would use. My family loves it when I make this and the smell of the sauce simmering all afternoon is wonderful!!

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  1. Begin by preparing sauce as follows: In a large dutch oven, saute onions and garlic in olive oil 1 or 2 minutes.
  2. Empty all four cans of crushed tomatoes into pot.
  3. Add basil, oregano, salt, crushed red pepper and brown sugar.
  4. Stir, bring to a boil and let simmer about 20 minutes.
  5. Stir sauce (this is when I usually will"taste adjust" any ingredients such as brown sugar and salt).
  6. Add meatballs that have just been browned and uncooked itailian sausage.
  7. Cover and simmer sauce for about 1 1/2- 2 hrs.
  8. About 10 minutes before sauce is done, mix ricotta cheese, eggs and parmesan cheese in a large bowl.
  9. Add about 2 1/2 cups of sauce to the cheese mixture and mix well.
  10. (Keep remaining sauce with meatballs and sausage warm).
  11. Toss cooked ziti with cheese/sauce mixture and spoon into a 9x13 inch baking pan.
  12. (you may need a larger pan or more than 1 pan).
  13. Sprinkle pasta with mozzarella cheese.
  14. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hr.
  15. Serve pasta with the extra sauce, meatballs and sausage ladled over top of each serving.