Okay I love vegetables, sometimes I think I could be vegetarian and then I remember what steak tastes like.
This dish is super good and can easily please anyone. I was inspired by a recipe I found watching Michael Smith’s tv show on the food network. He said that he makes this pasta for his kids who hate cooked vegetables. I will admit you actually can’t taste the veggies in it, which is neither here nor there for me. It is good however if you have picky eaters in your house, or maybe you’re a picky eater.
The secret is grating all the veggies into the pasta and then puréed them. Which seems odd but I actually liked it more when I purred it, most because of the texture. I added additional veggies and honestly it had more vegetables than what I cook on a normal night. This is the kind of meal you can add and take away ingredients you don’t like it’s meant to be super versatile.
The inside is basically like a lasanga- so good.
Creamy Tomato Bake with Hidden Veggies
454 g of penne or any pasta
8 slices thick cut bacon, chopped ( optional)
1 large onion, chopped
1 heads garlic cloves, sliced
1 28 oz can of whole tomatoes
1 5 ½ oz can of tomato paste
1 cup any red wine
1 Tbsp dred oregano
1-2 bay leaves
1 large sweet potato, grated
1 16 oz package of BABY spinach
1 handful of chopped mushroom
1/2 cup of carrots , grated
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
1 kg of cheese
1. Preheat your oven to 375ºF
2. Cook the pasta in lots of salted boiling water Drain and transfer to a large bowl.
3. In a medium saucepan cook the bacon until crispy and brown, about 15 minutes. Remove the bacon and set aside. Add the onion and garlic to the bacon drippings and cook until soft, 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, paste, red wine, oregano and bay leaf, salt. Bring to a simmer. Stir in the grated sweet potato,mushrooms,carrots and cook until soft, about 12 minutes. Add the spinach, stirring and allowing the heat of the sauce to wilt it. This sauce is ready to go but if you’ve got picky eaters, feel free to use your immersion blender to puree any veggie evidence!
4. In a medium bowl, mix the ricotta, Parmesan, egg, salt, pepper and half the cheese blend.
5. To assemble, stir the sauce into the pasta. Fold in the ricotta blend. Turn into a 9 by 13-inch baking pan. Top with remaining half of cheese blend and the reserved bacon. Bake until light brown and bubbly, about 20 minutes.
Thanks for reading,