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Classic Baked Ziti

Classic Baked Ziti

A recipe from Chef Bruce Kalman of Pasadena's Union restaurant.
Ingredients for Sauce
  • 1 oz olive oil
  • 2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 pinch red chili flakes
  • 1 qt san Marzano tomatoes (drained and ran through food mill)
  • 1⁄4 C extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tb Italian parsley, chiffonade
  • 2 tsp oregano, dried
  • 1 Tb basil, chiffonade
  • To taste, kosher sea salt
  • To taste, freshly ground black pepper
Ingredients for the Baked Ziti
  • 1 lb cooked ziti or rigatoni (note that when using dried pasta, it will double in size, not the case with fresh pasta)
  • 1 qt tomato sauce
  • 1⁄2 lb mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 C Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated on a microplane


Directions for Sauce

1. In a medium size sauté pan, heat the oil, garlic and chili together over medium heat; cook until the garlic is translucent, about 3 minutes

2. In a plastic container, combine the cooked garlic and chili with the remaining ingredients; using a whisk, mix together well

3. Reserve the sauce

Directions for Baked Ziti

1. Preheat the oven to 400F
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked pasta, 3 C of the sauce, half of the mozzarella and half of the Parmigiano; mix together well
3. Transfer the mixture to a baking dish and top with the remaining sauce and cheeses, spread the cheese completely from edge to edge
4. Place the pan on the center rack of the oven and bake until hot through and the cheese is nicely caramelized (lots of brown spots throughout)
5. Remove from the oven and grate some more Parmigiano-Reggiano over the top (for good measure!)

SERVE WITH GARLIC TOAST TO SOP UP THE SAUCE!


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