Prep 20 mins
Cook 8 hrs
Make your meat sauce in the slow cooker. When it's done, toss in some tortellini and simmer until cooked. Serve with plenty of grated Parmesan. You can also make this in the oven (combine everything except the cheeses in a casserole and bake covered at 350 for 40 min; uncover, add the cheeses and bake until the cheeses melt). (Copped from Tracy Stallard at allrecipes.com, but modified to my taste.)
- 1⁄2 lb lean ground beef
- 1⁄2 lb Italian sausage, sweet or hot
- 1 (16 ounce) jar tomato sauce
- 1 (4 1/2 ounce) can sliced mushrooms, undrained
- 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can Italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1⁄2 medium onion, diced
- 1⁄2 green bell pepper, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 (9 ounce) package cheese tortellini, refrigerated or fresh
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1⁄2 cup grated parmesan cheese, real Parmigiano Reggiano preferred
- If your sausage comes in links, remove it from the casings. Crumble the ground beef and Italian sausage into a large skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until browned. Remove meat to slow cooker, using a slotted spoon, leaving fat in skillet.
- Add onion, green pepper and garlic to skillet and sauté until soft and onion is translucent. Remove vegetables to slow cooker with a slotted spoon. Discard fat remaining in skillet.
- Add the marinara sauce, mushrooms, tomatoes, herbs, and brown sugar to the slow cooker. Cover, and cook on LOW heat for 7 to 8 hours. (It will probably be ready after 4 hours, but you can leave it to sit as long as 8 if need be.).
- Stir in the tortellini, and sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over the top. Cover and cook for 15 more minutes on LOW, or until the tortellini is tender. Serve with grated Parmigiano.