I was searching for something else on the Food Network website (and can’t even remember what that was right now…) even though, for some reason, I am not a big fan of their celebrity chefs. I can’t explain it and all of you Bobby Flay, Paula Deen, and Rachel Ray loving people will probably be mad at me, but I would rather explore other chefs and cookbook authors. Don’t get me wrong – I love a good “Chopped” or “Cupcake Wars” episode, it’s just that I am not compelled to watch cooking shows to teach me how to cook. Don’t know why. (Unless you are Martha Stewart teaching me how to do anything!)
Somehow I ended up on this recipe and it sounded really delicious. I love roasted vegetables and then baked with pasta? Right on!
I did substitute half a package of shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, for the cremini which we couldn’t find. I also used store bought marinara (oh, the horror!) that was lingering in my fridge. And, finally, I could not bring myself to put another two tablespoons of butter on top of this already not-so-diet dish. Didn’t miss it at all, but I did put a foil tent over the top halfway through so the top didn’t get too browned or too crunchy.
According to FN, this makes six servings, but it is so filling that unless you are feeding linebackers, make sure you invite friends over or get ready for leftovers (which are yums the next day too! 🙂 )
Baked Penne with Roasted Vegetables
2 red peppers, cored and cut into 1-inch wide strips
2 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 summer squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 cremini mushrooms, halved
1 yellow onion, peeled and sliced into 1-inch strips
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp. salt, divided
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 Tbsp. dried Italian herb mix or herbs de Provence
1 pound penne pasta
3 cups marinara sauce (store bought or homemade)
1 cup grated fontina cheese
1/2 cup grated smoked mozzarella
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1/3 cup for topping
2 Tbsp. butter, cut into small pieces
1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
2. On a baking sheet, toss the peppers, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, and onions with olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and dried herbs. Roast until tender, about 15 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook for about 6 minutes. (Since you will be cooking the pasta a second time in the oven, you want to make sure the inside is still hard.) Drain in a colander.
4. In a large bowl, toss the drained pasta with the roasted vegetables, marinara sauce, cheeses, peas, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Using a wooden spoon, gently mix, until all the pasta is coated with the sauce and the ingredients are combined.
5. Pour the pasta into a greased 9 x 13-inch pan. Top with the remaining 1/3 cup Parmesan and butter pieces. Bake until top is golden and cheese melts, about 25 minutes.
Source: Giada De Laurentiis on Food Network