Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Baked Penne

I took a blogging hiatus to focus on my five (yes, five!) English classes this semester. However, that definitely doesn't mean I stopped cooking. I plan to post a ton of stuff tonight, starting with this baked penne. Most baked penne is made with tomato sauce, but I decided to switch things up and use pesto instead.

Baked Pesto Penne
16 oz or 1lb of penne pasta, uncooked
1 pkg of pesto sauce (I suppose you could use jarred pesto, but I like the packaged kind)
1 tbsp of chopped garlic
1/4 cup of olive oil
1/2 cup of water
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus 1/4 cup
1/4 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tbsp of butter

Preheat the oven to 350'. Using the tablespoon of butter, grease a 9x13 baking dish. I think mine was smaller, so basically use whatever you have. Maybe all of the pasta won't fit. So what.

In a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta until al dente, meaning it still has a little bite to it. This is very important because the pasta will be baked later, furthering its cooking process.

In a large mixing boil, combine the pesto sauce, garlic, olive oil, water, and 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese. When the pasta is done, strain it and add it to the pesto sauce mix, stirring to combine all of the ingredients. Pour the pasta into the baking dish, topping it with the rest of the parmesan cheese and the mozzarella cheese.

Bake the pasta for 30 minutes, or until the pasta is edible and the cheese has melted and slightly browned on top.

Guys, this is perfect for the -25 degree weather we've been having. It's delicious, too. Bonus!

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