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Mediterranean Baked Penne

November 1997

Your rating: None Average: 3.8 (57 votes)

This Italian-inspired take on an American casserole is about as tasty as a one-dish meal can get.



READER'S COMMENT:
"Disappointing. Too much pasta for the veggies; not worth the time and trouble. Tasty enough to eat, but it would be easier to just use those veggies with some marinara for a nice sauce to top the pasta. "
Mediterranean Baked Penne

Makes: 8 servings

Active Time:

Total Time:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup fine dry breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 small zucchini, chopped
  • 1 medium eggplant, (about 1 pound), chopped
  • 1 green or red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 28-ounce can plum tomatoes, drained and coarsely chopped, juice reserved
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound dried penne rigate, or rigatoni
  • 1 1/2 cups coarsely grated part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a 3-quart baking dish with nonstick spray. Coat the dish with 1/4 cup breadcrumbs, tapping out the excess. Put a pot of water on to boil for cooking pasta.
  2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add zucchini, eggplant, bell pepper, onion and celery; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Add wine and stir until almost evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and juice. Bring to a simmer and cook until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  3. Meanwhile, cook penne (or rigatoni) in boiling salted water until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain and rinse well. Toss pasta with the vegetable mixture and stir in mozzarella.
  4. Spoon the pasta mixture into prepared baking dish and drizzle eggs evenly over the top. In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup breadcrumbs and Parmesan. Sprinkle evenly over the top.
  5. Bake pasta until golden and bubbly, 40 to 50 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3, cover and chill for up to 2 days.

Nutrition

Per serving: 387 calories; 9 g fat (4 g sat, 2 g mono); 65 mg cholesterol; 57 g carbohydrates; 17 g protein; 5 g fiber; 312 mg sodium; 315 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 3 1/2

Exchanges: 3 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 medium-fat meat


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