One day when my sister and I were talking about foods we recalled from childhood, she mentioned Johnny Marzetti. The hearty, easy (and cheap) casserole dish was indeed a favorite of our mother, and we still make it in our households.
I suspected that it might have originated at Marzetti’s restaurant in Columbus, Ohio, and like to think that mother first picked up her liking for the dish when she went to Ohio State. Maybe her boyfriend Ray even took her to Marzetti’s for dinner, who knows?
But until I did a little research, I did not realize what a thoroughly Ohio recipe Johnny Marzetti is.
I would tell you the history, but this website, Ohio Thoughts, does such a good job that I urge you to follow the link for the story, pictures, the original recipe and the author’s variation.
Just in case you’re too fatigued to click over to that site (that’s sarcasm, in case you missed it), here’s the abbreviated version. I remember mother adding chopped green peppers. I add garlic salt and Italian herbs.
- Cook macaroni or noodles.
- In skillet, brown hamburger with onions (if you want them), mushrooms (if you have them) and when they are brown add tomato sauce and any seasonings you want.
- Dump all that on top of the noodles in a casserole dish and top with grated cheddar cheese. Bake