Vegetarian Pasta Bake

This is a great family favourite in our house. It's amazing that with such few ingredients something could taste so good. Even though it is essentially a vegetarian dish, meat lovers will come back for seconds, it's just that tasty. It's a meal that will warm the hearts of your family or guests. You can serve it with a simple salad of rocket leaves, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and a little fresh squeezed lemon juice, and some nice crusty ciabata bread.

If you really want this dish to shine, make sure you use the best (or near to as) quality ingredients though.

Cast your vote for Vegetarian Pasta Bake

Ingredients

Good quality Olive Oil, extra virgin is best.

Sea Salt and fresh ground Black Pepper

1 Onion, rough chop

1 Clove of Garlic, sliced

1 dried Red Chili, crumbled (leave out the seeds if you don't like too much heat)

2 400g tins of Tomatoes

1 large handful of fresh Basil

1/2 tbps of Red Wine Vinegar

1/2 Cup of Water

2 or 3 Handfulls of grated Parmesan cheese (fresh, not from those containers you buy off the shelf please)

400 grams of Mozzarella, sliced

300 grams of Dried Orecchiette (if you can't find this, a simple shell pasta will work fine)

Saute the onion, garlic and dried chili.
Saute the onion, garlic and dried chili.
Liquidize tomatoes to make a smooth sauce.
Liquidize tomatoes to make a smooth sauce.
Mix pasta, tomato and Parmesan cheese together.
Mix pasta, tomato and Parmesan cheese together.
Layer tomato/pasta, sauce and Parmesan cheese.
Layer tomato/pasta, sauce and Parmesan cheese.
Layer with Mozzarella cheese.
Layer with Mozzarella cheese.
Cook until golden and bubbling, serve hot or cold.
Cook until golden and bubbling, serve hot or cold.

Method

Pre heat your oven to 200c.

Roughly chop the onion and slice the garlic. Pour a good plash of the olive oil into a heated sauce pan (this has to be big enough to accommodate the tomatoes and water) and throw in the onion, garlic and crumbled up dried red chili. Sauté over a low heat for about 10 minutes until soft.

Once this is done, pour in the tinned tomatoes and the water. Bring to the boil and then simmer for about 20 minutes (lid off)

Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. When cooked, strain and place back into the cooking pot.

Once the tomatoes are cooked, using a stick blender (or you could place it into a food processor, being careful as it will be very hot), liquidize them into a smooth sauce. Chop, or just tear the basil into the sauce, add the red wine vinegar and season to taste.

Place half of the tomato sauce into the pot containing the pasta along with a handful of the grated Parmesan cheese and mix together.

Use some oil and lightly grease a 2 lt baking tray and spoon a third of the tomato/pasta mix into the baking tray. Ladle over a third of the remaining sauce, sprinkle over some Parmesan cheese and top with the sliced Mozzarella. Repeat this two more times finishing with some torn basil leaves and a light sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.

Place into the pre heated oven and cook for around half an hour, or until the top is golden.


Comments 9 comments

Arlene V. Poma 5 years ago

Oh, yeah! I'm bookmarking this for me (upcoming Thanksgiving meal) and sending a copy to my brother. He has been a vegetarian since 2007 and would appreciate this wonderful recipe, too. Voted up, useful, interesting, and AWESOME because many of us are pulling away from meat. Thanks!


InTuneWithCooking profile image

InTuneWithCooking 5 years ago from Australia Author

That's great Arlene V. Poma! I hope you enjoy your thanksgiving meal. Thank you for stopping by.


bell du jour profile image

bell du jour 5 years ago from Ireland

Sounds delicious! I'll definitely being trying this recipe:-)


Moon Lightened profile image

Moon Lightened 5 years ago from Delhi, India

I really love the way you presented this recipe! Makes me want to crawl inside the pan and swim in it! Sure looks yummy.


InTuneWithCooking profile image

InTuneWithCooking 5 years ago from Australia Author

Definitely worth a try bell du jour, it is delicious, and thank you Moon Lightened! Enjoy your tasty swim :)


pedrn44 profile image

pedrn44 5 years ago from New Berlin Wisconsin

oh does this sound yummy! I am making Lasagna for Christmas Eve and wanted to make a vegetarian one as well. Can't wait to try this!! Voted up and awesome!


InTuneWithCooking profile image

InTuneWithCooking 5 years ago from Australia Author

Thank you pedrn44, I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!


SanneL profile image

SanneL 5 years ago from Sweden

This is a dish I definitely make for Christmas. It will stand out from the Swedish meatballs, smoked eel and the herrings, that's for sure!

Bookmarked, voted up and very useful!


InTuneWithCooking profile image

InTuneWithCooking 5 years ago from Australia Author

Thank you SanneL. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do, and it should go down well for a Christmas meal. Enjoy!

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