Recipe: Baked Penne with Random Vegetables

27 Jan

I had wanted to make a baked ziti, but didn’t have the tomato sauce or enough cheese, so this is what we made instead – it was great.

Ingredients

  • 1 package organic penne from Trader Joe’s
  • 1 carrot, sliced thinly on the diagonal
  • 1 head of broccoli (from last week’s basket), cut into small florets, cut the stalk into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • half a package of mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 veggie Italian sausage, sliced to resemble the carrots
  • small handful of parsley, rustically chopped
  • shredded Italian cheese mix from Trader Joe’s
  • ricotta, a few dollops
  • tomato sauce (we didn’t have any, so I made my own using some tomatoes from our garden that I had frozen last summer.  Freeze the whole tomatoes and to cook, just put them in a sauce pot and turn the heat up to high.  They will let out A LOT of water, but don’t worry, let everything boil and reduce for a while, add some salt, pepper, tomato paste and sugar, if the tomatoes need it and you have tomato sauce!  If you want to be picky, you can take out the skins, but i don’t mind them.)

Cook the pasta to al dente in salted water.  Add in the carrots about a minute after the pasta starts cooking.  Add the broccoli at the last minute, drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, saute the onion until golden in olive oil, remove from the pan.  Saute the mushrooms, veggies sausage and garlic until toasty.

Mix the pasta, veggies, onion, sausage and parsley together with a drizzle of olive oil, salt & pepper.  Transfer mixture into a baking dish, spoon tomato sauce on top.  Dot the top with spoonfuls of ricotta and cover with a couple handfuls of cheese.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.

This recipe made enough for dinner plus at least 4 lunches.

We served this with a simple salad of torn red oak leaf lettuce in a sherry vinaigrette.

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