Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tomato, Basil, and Cheese Baked Pasta

So I made this the other night and it is so yummy! It's super easy and fast! It feels so good to be in the kitchen and cooking again!

1 pound small shell pasta
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan in a slow stream
3 large cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 small to medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 (28-ounce) can crushed Italian tomatoes, any brand
1/2 cup, 10 to 12 fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces
Salt and pepper
1 cup store bought basil pesto sauce
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, a couple of handfuls
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella

Cook pasta to al dente in large pot of salted boiling water.

Meanwhile, preheat large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil, garlic, and onion. Cook, stirring often for about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes to the onions and stir. When tomatoes come to a boil, reduce heat to low and add basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Preheat your broiler to high and make sure oven rack is in center of the oven.

Drain pasta and add to a casserole dish. Add pesto, ricotta, and a handful of Parmigiano. Stir to coat the pasta. Pour the tomato sauce over the pasta. Shred mozzarella and scatter over the pasta along with some more Parmigiano.

Place dish under broiler for about 3-5 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbles on top. Enjoy!

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