One of the other women on the message board I belong to has a food-based blog I follow, FrostedFingers.com. Every Tuesday she posts a new recipe, and last week's looked super easy and good, Angel Hair Pasta. The only downside was that it used store bought pesto and alfredo sauce--both things I love but don't generally eat because of the high fat content in both. When I was doing my meal planning for the week I thought of that recipe and decided to make something similar but with ricotta instead of the alfredo. Then when I was thinking about it more, it sounded a lot like a recipe my mom made recently for my brother when she was visiting him. I called her today and got the recipe, so I think mine is going to be a combination of the two.
Pesto Pasta Surprise
1 package whole wheat penne
1 jar marinara sauce
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup mozzarella
1/4 cup pesto
Additional mozzarella for topping
Prepare penne (or pasta of your choice) per package directions; set aside. Combine cheeses and pesto in medium bowl; set aside. In 8x12 pan, layer as follows: half of the cooked pasta, half the marinara sauce, all the cheese/pesto mixture, remaining half of the pasta, remaining marinara, additional mozzarella.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted.
I'm really excited to try this tonight. I have some pesto leftover from making Veggie Pesto Pizza last week, so however much of that I have in the freezer is what I'm going to use. I may use a bit more ricotta, too, because I like cheesy pasta.
Along with this I'm going to make Barefoot Contessa's Garlic Ciabbata Bread and a salad. Yum!!