Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Baked Fusilli & Lackluster Dance Moves
This baked fusilli is enhanced by the flavor of tomatoes and zucchini with a melody of sweet oregano, salty Parmesan cheese and a sour hint of red wine vinegar. As always there were tunes playing in the background while I prepared this dish and they were from one of my favorite bands out of the U.K.
I been a fan of Blur ever since a friend gave me one of their demo CDs called Blur-to-go.
My friend didn’t like their sound, but I sure did! On this cooking occasion I prepared the sauce listening to some of the bands bigger hits. Their song “Tender” had me singing aloud and “Girls and Boys” spurred on a spontaneous moment of me showcasing my lackluster dance moves.
I don't think anyone would classify this dish as being fancy. It’s more like a Blur tune. Straight forward and enjoyable with some kick thrown in for good measure. Perfect for weeknight cooking!
8 oz (227 g) uncooked fusilli (about 3 cups)
1/2 lb lean ground beef
1 cup diced onions
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp dried oregano
Pinch or two red pepper flakes
1 medium zucchini, chopped
1 can (28 oz / 796 ml) stewed tomatoes, undrained
2 tsp red wine vinegar
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, divided
½ cup (packed) shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese (2 oz / 57 g)
In a large saucepan, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
In a large saucepan, cook ground beef over medium-high heat. Add onions. Cook and stir until beef is cooked through and onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, oregano, red pepper flakes and zucchini. Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Stir in tomatoes, vinegar and pepper. Bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. Stir in Parmesan cheese and cooked pasta.
Transfer the pasta mixture to a 9 x 13-inch baking dish and spread evenly along the bottom. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top.
Bake, covered, in a 350º F oven for 15 minutes. Remove cover and broil, uncovered, for 5 minutes more until cheese begins to brown. Serve hot.
Volume: Makes 6 to 8 servings
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The Kitchen Roadie