Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Parmesan Pizza Ravioli (have your pasta and pizza too!)


Next time you’re at the grocery store scoping out the many varieties of pre-made pasta sauce for your tortellini or ravioli, consider turning your attention to the shelf stocked with the many varieties of pizza sauce.

Why? Because pizza sauce is the new pasta sauce!

I gave this cooking experiment a try by topping spinach and cheese filled ravioli with traditional style pizza sauce and it was crazy good!

The pizza sauce is thicker than pasta sauce so it’s a good idea to thin it out with some of the cooking water used to cook the pasta. Then stir in your favorite pizza toppings of choice. For this ravioli dish I opted for cooked diced bell peppers, onions and grated Parmesan cheese.

By total fluke I ended up building even more flavor into this pasta dish by cooking the bell peppers and onions first and then using the same deep skillet, with all that flavor in it, to boil the pasta. My fluky cooking move allowed the pasta to soak in all the wonderful flavors of the veggies as it boiled!

With the traditional pizza sauce, Parmesan cheese and cooked vegetables this ravioli was…how do you say…Bellissimo!!!

Pizza Ravioli
Spinach and Cheese filled Ravioli with covered in pizza sauce and your favorite pizza toppings
Recipe Inspired from Pillsbury Kids Cookbook

Time it Takes: 15 minutes
Makes: A couple platefuls

1 tsp olive oil
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
½ onion, diced
3 cups spinach and cheese filled ravioli (or the pasta of your choice)
Traditional style pizza sauce (7.5 oz can)
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

In a large deep skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add bell peppers and onions.
Cook and stir until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Transfer cooked vegetables to a bowl and set aside.

In the same deep skillet (without cleaning it) cook pasta according to package directions. Using a soup ladle, reserve 1/3 cup of the cooking water before draining the pasta.

Return pasta to skillet along with cooked vegetables, pizza sauce, Parmesan cheese and reserved cooking water. Cook and gently stir over medium low heat until pasta is coated in sauce.


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