This Monday it is time to head West to learn about my Momma, Laurie Ann Kelly Giannini!  I am home now and so excited to have made it in time to help her!  You see my Momma plays an integral part of our county fair which starts this week and I came as fast as I could to help things run smoothly!  I might also add that Momma’s Birthday was Saturday, Happy Belated Birthday!

Now let me tell you a little bit about this amazing woman of the Lord, my Momma.  She is the strongest woman that I know.  She has moved a lot in her lifetime and is not afraid of a new adventure.  Having not been raised in the cattle industry, she married my Dad and little did she know that it would be the adventure of a lifetime, a life on the ranch.  Momma works hard, always putting others before herself.  She is always there to lend a hand to those in need, and always know the perfect thing to say to make my sister and I smile.  Growing up my friend new that there was always room at the table for them to come by and Momma was more than happy to welcome any friend to stay for dinner.  Momma has always loved my close friends as her own, even when far way, and her ability to love others is something that I strive for every day.  She is a sister, wife, friend, Sunday school teacher and the best Momma a girl could ask for.

Momma likes to be in the kitchen, she likes to come up with new ideas and loves to cook for a big family.  She has learned to cook Italian food.  When I think of my Momma’s cooking I think of Raviolis.  When I was a little girl, we would make raviolis from scratch, hundreds at a time and freeze them for special occasions, Thanksgiving, Birthdays, Christmas, etc.   My Pappa loved Raviolis so Momma would make them special for him anytime he asked.  I too love raviolis and so I was excited to share this family secret with y’all.  While I have not disclosed the family ravioli recipe just yet, the secret is in the preparation.

Raviolis Like Momma Makes Them

1 Bag Frozen Raviolis (homemade or from the store)

2 Cups Italian Cheese

Medium size can of diced tomatoes

(home-grown and canned are my favorite)

 1 Small can of tomato sauce

 ¼ Cup of red wine (optional, any kind will do, homemade if you have it)

 ½ Stick of butter

 ½  white onion

 1 lb ground beef

 4 T minced garlic (I buy it in the jar, way easy!)

 1 t sugar

 Oregano, Thyme, Basil, Salt, and Pepper to taste

Prepare the tomato gravy first thing. For instructions click here Traditional Tomato GravyWhile preparing it, boil the water for the raviolis.  Next put the raviolis in the boiling water while still frozen. They need not be in there much longer than 4 min.  You will know they are done when they begin to float, however, you really don’t want to overcook them or they will fall apart.  Once the raviolis are done, the process begins.  Layer the bottom of your baking dish with raviolis so the whole bottom of the pan is covered.  Then add a layer of Italian cheese.  Next layer some tomato gravy until all the raviolis are covered.  Then repeat… raviolis, cheese, tomato gravy.  Then top with the remainding cheese and bake for 15 minutes in a 350˚oven.  Let the cheese on top get golden brown, then go ahead and serve.

Easy Fresh Garlic Bread

Growing up Momma always bought bread dough, froze it, then baked it at her ease.  I do something similar to make fresh garlic bread.  I buy the wop & pop French bread dough at the store.  Slice the roll in half, stretch out the pieces then twist them together.  I place it on a greased cookie sheet and sprinkle with garlic salt.  Bake this at 350˚ for 20 min or until golden brown then remove from the cookie sheet immediately.  I then melt 2 T of butter and pour over the bread while it is still hot!  Delicious!

Giannini Style Salad

Dad loves simple salads and so therefore, Momma makes them often.  This salad is easy, and we love it.  All you need is some iceburg lettuce, oil, vinegar, salt, pepper and I include carrot shreds if I have them.  Break the lettuce into pieces.  Put them in a bowl.  Add the carrots if you wish.  The drizzle with oil, and add vinegar.  Momma uses homemade vinegar for the most part, but any will work.  Then sprinkle with salt and pepper!  Easy and refreshing!

Raviolis Like Momma Makes Them Costs

1 Bag Frozen Raviolis (homemade or from the store) – $3.40

2 Cups Italian Cheese – $1.69

Medium size can of diced tomatoes- $0.70

 1 Small can of tomato sauce – $0.40

 ½ Stick of butter- $0.18

 ½  white onion – $0.30

 1 lb ground beef – $2.24

Seasonings – $1.00

Total Cost – $9.21 (Serves 4)

Cost Per Plate – $2.30


I hope you have enjoyed hearing about a woman who inspres me the most!  Gather up your family and enjoy a delicious meal together!