Friday, December 9, 2011

Pasta alla Formiana

I have mentioned before my love of Giada, and I'll say it again.  She really is one of my favorites - and everything of hers that I've made is delicious and easy. 

It doesn't get much easier than Pasta alla Formiana.  I had everything except the tomatoes already in the pantry.  And I also like that you control the sodium and calories since you're making the sauce with just crushed tomatoes, garlic, spices and olive oil.  You don't even have to cook the pasta before you bake it - it happens in the oven!  Dump, mix, bake. 

The fresh tomatoes in this were delicious, especially after they had roasted for an hour.  Add a little parmesean cheese and a veggie and you've got a great, super easy dinner!  This would be great for entertaining too because you can just throw it in the oven when your guests arrive and will have an hour to hang out before you sit down to eat.  And M had the leftovers the next night and said it was even better.  One tip I have is to make sure you put a baking sheet on the shelf under the dish in the oven - it definitely bubbled over and made a bit of a stinky mess on the bottom of our oven...


Pasta alla Formiana

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 clove garlic, coarsely chopped
1/2 pound (8 ounces) mezze penne or other small pasta
1/3 cup olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1/4 cup dried oregano
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 very ripe, extra-large or beefsteak tomatoes, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices

Put an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Grease an 8 by 8-inch glass baking dish. Set aside.

In a food processor, blend together the crushed tomatoes and garlic. Pour into a medium bowl and add the uncooked pasta, 1/3 cup olive oil, oregano, salt, and pepper. Toss until all the ingredients are coated.

Line the bottom and sides of the baking dish with tomato slices. Pour the pasta mixture into the pan and spread evenly. Arrange the remaining tomato slices in an overlapping layer on top of the pasta mixture, making sure the mixture is completely covered. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake until the tomatoes are slightly crispy and the pasta is cooked, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes before serving.


Enjoy and have a great weekend!!  Any fun plans?!

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