As a single mother and a food blogger, childhood hunger is something that really concerns me. I grew up in an Italian household where food was the heart of our home and part of our daily lives. I began to help my dad in the kitchen at a very young age and thus began my love affair with food, which I have passed along to my children.
** Me at about 5 helping my dad make fresh pasta. Nice shirt dad!
Being a single parent is not easy and there used to be times when I would worry about making ends meet, but I always found a way to put food on the table. Some families are not as lucky and often do not know where their next meal will come from. Did you know that 1 in 5 children are hungry in America? This is an astounding number and it’s not going to change without awareness and funds. For those living in Tampa Bay, there are ways to help. Romano’s Macaroni Grill, in partnership with Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry, is doing something about the epidemic as they embark on a national campaign to share ONE MILLION meals with kids in need. Here is how you can help:
Donate $2 towards No Kid Hungry at Romano’s Macaroni Grill, receive $5 Off your next visit.
Share an image from our Facebook Gallery. For every share, we’ll help connect a kid with a meal.
Tag an Instagram photo or tweet of your Macaroni Grill experience with #macgrillgive. For every tag, we’ll help connect a kid with a meal.
Since pasta is a staple in my home, I would like to share my daughter Gianna’s favorite spaghetti dish, Spaghetti alla Gianna. By sharing my recipe with you, they will help connect kids with up to 500 meals with just this one post! Enjoy!
Spaghetti alla Gianna
- 2-3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I never measure)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1.5 lb of mild Italian Sausage (ground)
- 1 can of San Marzano whole peeled tomotoes (28 oz)
- 2 tablespoons of dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons of fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
- fresh ground pepper
- 1 cup heavy cream
- fresh basil leaves
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1 lb spaghetti
Heat olive oil in a large sauce pan at medium high heat. Add the chopped onion, garlic and red pepper flakes and stir continuously until soft (about 5 minutes). Add the Italian sausuage and cook until done. (8-10 minutes) Add the can of San Marzano tomatoes, oregano, parsley and ground pepper. Raise the heat to high and stir while breaking up the tomatoes and bring the sauce to a boil. Turn down to low and let simmer for about 30-45 minutes while stirring occasionally. In a separate pot, bring water to a boil and cook spaghetti until al dente. Drain and set aside. Add heavy cream and 1/2 cup Parmesan to the sauce and bring to a boil. Turn off heat, add spaghetti to pot and toss until coated. Dish up and top with fresh Parmesan and lots of fresh basil leaves. Serve with some fresh Italian bread to soak up all the extra sauce. Put on some Dean Martin (Gia’s favorite) and Mangia! Oh, don’t forget the vino for mamma and the milk for the bambini!