I want to start by saying that I added the picture above because my dog made it into the shot. Can you see him? Fortunately, the picture of the pasta didn't turn out too bad either :)
I have been craving some baked pasta for the past week or so. So since it's Friday, and it's cold and windy, I thought tonight would be a great night for some comfort food. I threw this together pretty quickly and I would consider this an extremely easy dish even for a beginner cook. I will say that next time I will add more sauce. But it was very yummy and very comforting and it really hit the spot. Craving fulfilled!
Cheesy Baked Penne
1 lb penne pasta
1 28 oz can marinara sauce
1 15 oz container of Ricotta cheese
about 1.5-2 cups mozzarella cheese, divided (I like my pasta really cheesy. This is NOT a healthy dinner)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
2 tsp dried basil
2 tsp dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 13x9 inch pan with cooking spray. Boil pasta in salted water until almost al dente. Meanwhile, combine sauce, ricotta, mozzarella, and seasonings in a large bowl, reserving 1/2 cup of the mozzarella. Drain pasta and add to cheese mixture. Stir pasta and cheeses together until well combines. Spread cheese and pasta in pan and top with reserved mozzarella cheese. Bake in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown. Let rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.
Sort of Homemade Breadsticks
1 round of refrigerated pizza dough (I used Trader Joe's brand)
olive oil spray
Preheat oven to 350. Roll dough out into 10 inch circle. Slice into sticks with a pizza wheel and lay on greased baking sheet. Spray with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic powder and oregano. Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes.