Monday, February 1, 2010

Elsa's Baked Ziti

I found this in Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book & had to try it! It's actually her mother's recipe, and it is so yummy. Enjoy!

1 pound ziti rigate (with ridges) or rigatoni
2 c. ricotta cheese
Grill Seasoning, such as McCormick's Montreal Steak Seasoning
A couple of handfuls of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 T extra virgin olive oil
1 to 2 garlic cloves, chopped
Crushed red pepper flakes
1 c. crushed tomatoes *I like more sauce & would double this*
A few fresh basil leaves, torn or chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Salt the water, add the pasta, and cook to al dente.

Drain the ricotta cheese in a strainer or a colander lined with paper towels. Place the drained ricotta in a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish and season with some grill seasoning and a few handfuls of Parm Cheese.

While the pasta cooks, heat the oil in a small pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and a pinch or two of red pepper flakes and sauté for minute or two, then stir in the tomatoes and basil. Reduce the heat to low.

Drain the pasta and toss with the cheese mixture. Add the tomato sauce, top the pasta with more Parm, and bake until the cheese browns, about 15 minutes.

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