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4 cups Neapolitan Ragu
1 pound ziti, penne or rigatoni pasta
1 pound whole or part-skim ricotta cheese
1 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
12 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, chopped or shredded
1 Prepare the ragu, if necessary. Then, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add 2 tablespoons of salt, then the pasta. Stir well. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, until almost tender. Drain the pasta.
2 In a large bowl, toss the pasta with 2 cups of the ragu, 1 cup of the ricotta, and half the grated cheese. Slice some of the meatballs and sausages from the ragu and stir them into the pasta. (The remaining meats can be served as a second course.)
3 Place a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350?F. Spread half the ziti in a 13 ? 9 ? 2-inch baking dish. Spread the remaining ricotta on top. Sprinkle with the mozzarella. Pour on 1 cup of the sauce. Top with the remaining ziti and another cup of sauce. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup grated cheese. Cover the dish securely with foil.
4 Bake the ziti 45 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 to 30 minutes more, or until the blade of a thin knife inserted into the center feels hot and the sauce is bubbling around the edges. Cool 15 minutes on a wire rack. Serve hot.
From "1,000 Italian Recipes." Copyright 2004 by Michele Scicolone. Used with permission of the publisher, Wiley Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
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