Chef notes

This can be a nice springtime pasta bake. Even within the lighter, hotter months of the yr, I’m at all times on the lookout for my kitchen to be a supply of consolation meals. I really like this dish for filling that essential place. You simply pull the pasta out of the oven and place within the heart of the desk. It is bought springtime vibes galore but in addition feels so homey and acquainted.

Method tip: In case your asparagus are medium and thick, peel and halve lengthwise earlier than chopping and cooking.

Swap choice: You may substitute any quick-cooking spring greens rather than the asparagus and zucchini. Instance: Snow pea, snap peas, inexperienced beans. You can even sub in rigatoni, penne or shells for the pasta form.



In a big skillet, warmth 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onion, celery and garlic, and season with salt and the crimson pepper flakes. Prepare dinner till the onions grow to be translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, sugar and 1 cup water, and prepare dinner for a further 15-18 minutes over medium warmth, stirring infrequently. Add 2 extra tablespoons of the olive oil and mix the sauce within the blender till easy. Style for seasoning. Switch to a big bowl.


In a big pot, carry the water to a rolling boil. Add the salt and produce the water again to a boil. Style the water (it must be salty like seawater). Add the ziti and stir with a big, slotted spoon to make sure the pasta doesn’t stick because it cooks. Prepare dinner till nonetheless fairly agency, 8-10 minutes. Drain and drop into the bowl with sauce. Stir to mix.


Preheat the oven to 375 F.


In a medium skillet, warmth the remaining 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium warmth. Add the asparagus and zucchini with a pinch of salt and prepare dinner till tender, 2-3 minutes. Switch to the bowl with the sauce.


Add the ziti to the sauce and stir gently to mix. Stir within the basil. Style for seasoning. Fill a baking dish with all the pasta combine, sprinkling half of the mozzarella and Parmesan into the pasta as you fill the dish. Prime with all the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan.


Place the dish within the heart of the oven and bake for 12-Quarter-hour, or till the highest browns. Run the dish below the broiler 2-3 minutes for an additional bubbly, browned high.


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