You might think from reading my blog and seeing all of the references to Southern food traditions that I am a Southerner. I am not. I suppose I am “from” the Midwest, since I was born and spent the first five weeks of my life there. I have lived in many different places and on a few different continents. In all of my travels, I have never found reason to complain about the food – every culture I have encountered has unique preparations, distinct flavors, and delicious food!
Since living in the southern United States, I have enjoyed learning about Southern cooking and, in particular, about the food traditions of Tennessee. When I first moved here, one of the menu items that often gave me pause was “macaroni and tomatoes”. I just couldn’t fathom exactly what that could be. Was it a regional name for marinara and spaghetti? Was it a casserole? It turns out that it is exactly what it sounds like – macaroni (usually elbow) and tomatoes mixed together in a big pot.
My version has a few more ingredients than the one you would get at, let’s say, Lambert’s Café. But, it still gives the basic idea of the dish – and is very filling for just 6 points!
Macaroni and Tomatoes
6 oz veggie pasta (elbow or rotini)
3 cloves garlic, minced
¾ cup 2% mozzarella, shredded
3 tsp olive oil
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, mix garlic, cheese, and oil.
- Once pasta is cooked, drain the water and return the pasta to the pot. Stir in the tomatoes and return the pot to the stove for 2-3 minutes, just to warm tomatoes.
- Add pasta and tomatoes to the oil mixture in the bowl. Stir until combined.