pasta

Baked Penne with Roasted Peppers

Today, Mom and I ventured out to my favorite area of town. 23rd Ave NW. It’s a street full of cute boutiques, bakeries, nice restaurants and impressive houses. First things first, I had to find some breakfast. We found a place, Portland Bagels, that satisfied my smoked salmon tooth. Right as we finished ordering and were going to look for a seat, this pushy girl in the back of the line went to put her purse in a chair of the only available table. Grrr. Luckily, we found extra seating downstairs so miss pushy-chair-claimer got to keep her seat.
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I forgot about her instantly as I bit into the scrumptious bagel with lox and onion cream cheese. IMG_0134We wandered around 23rd and I found a cute shirt, vegetable peeler and 9×13 inch pan for chocolate bark making.
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Stella was waiting for us laying on top of the heater with her ball when we got home. John was downstairs in his “cave” working on making books.
IMG_0137These books are actually books of Mom or John’s poetry. They’re beautiful and unique, inside and out.
IMG_0138Since Mom was still feeling under the weather, I took on dinner with the help of my sous chef sister. I’ve made this baked ziti before and it is a ton of prep work and assembly but it’s definitely worth it. From roasting the peppers…
IMG_0139To dicing and sautéing the onions and mushrooms, grating and combining all three cheeses…
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Assembling the layers and baking. We paired it with bread and a pomegranate and pistachio salad. Fabulous Hot smile
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Baked Ziti with Roasted Pepper from Moosewood Restaurant New Classics cookbook
Ingredients:
2 tbsp olive oil
1 c chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4 c chopped mushrooms
3 c undrained canned tomatoes, chopped
3 tbsp chopped fresh basil

2 red bell peppers, seeded and cut into long strips
2 tbsp olive oil
1 lb penne pasta
1 c goat cheese
2 c ricotta cheese
2 c grated provolone cheese
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 c chopped fresh basil
1 tbsp dried oregano

In a saucepan, warm the oil and saute the onions, garlic, salt, and black pepper on medium heat until the onions are very soft, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and simmer on low heat for about 30 minutes. Add the basil just before assembling the ziti.
Meanwhile preheat the broiler. Lightly oil a 9×13 inch nonreactive baking pan. Bring a large, covered pot of salted water to boil.
In a bowl, toss the bell peppers with the oil. Spread them on a baking tray and broil for 10 minutes, until softened and slightly browned. Set aside and lower the temperature to 350.
When the water boils, add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 7 minutes. While the pasta cooks, stir together the three cheeses, the garlic, basil, and oregano. When the pasta is al dente, drain it and stir it into the cheese mixture.
To assemble, spread 2 cups of the tomato sauce in the baking pan. Layer on the pasta and cheese, the roasted peppers, and finally cover with the rest of the tomato sauce. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until piping hot.

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