19 November 2009

Hotdish Hump Day: 11.18 | Cook: Tina

See them all... 7 weeks of delicious hotdishes. Last up to plate, Tina. Super yum. I've had it for lunch yesterday, dinner last night and a little corner today. So good. And it looks like it's easy to prep and cook!

Abby: All done.
Michelle: The secret is in the sauce... so good I saw an italian lady waving a wooden spoon in the left over smears on my plate.
Tina: Enjoy!
Nick: Love'n the noodles.


Serves 8 to 10. Published March 1, 2009. From Cook's Illustrated.



pound whole milk cottage cheese or 1 percent cottage cheese (see note)


large eggs , lightly beaten


ounces grated Parmesan cheese (about 1 1/2 cups)

Table salt


pound ziti or other short, tubular pasta


tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


medium garlic cloves , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 5 teaspoons)


(28-ounce) can tomato sauce (use a 2nd can if you want this more tomato saucy!)


(14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes (again, use another can or a half of a can if you want this more tomato-y)


teaspoon dried oregano


cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves


teaspoon sugar

Ground black pepper


teaspoon cornstarch


cup heavy cream (see note)


ounces low-moisture whole-milk mozzarella cheese , cut into 1/4-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups) (do NOT substitute for skim or part skim mozzarella - use the whole-milk, and don't use shredded - buy a block and cut into cubes)


1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk cottage cheese, eggs, and 1 cup Parmesan together in medium bowl; set aside. Bring 4 quarts of water to boil in large Dutch oven over high heat. Stir in 1 tablespoon salt and pasta; cook, stirring occasionally, until pasta begins to soften but is not yet cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. (If making this ahead of time, then baking the next day, do not cook pasta more than 5 minutes.) Drain pasta and leave in colander (do not wash Dutch oven).

2. Meanwhile, heat oil and garlic in 12-inch skillet over medium heat until garlic is fragrant but not brown, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and oregano; simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in ½ cup basil and sugar, then season with salt and pepper.

3. Stir cornstarch into heavy cream in small bowl; transfer mixture to now-empty Dutch oven set over medium heat. Bring to simmer and cook until thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove pot from heat and add cottage cheese mixture, 1 cup tomato sauce, and ¾ cup mozzarella, then stir to combine. Add pasta and stir to coat thoroughly with sauce.

4. Transfer pasta mixture to 13- by 9-inch baking dish and spread remaining tomato sauce evenly over pasta. Sprinkle remaining ¾ cup mozzarella and remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan over top. Cover baking dish tightly with foil and bake for 30 minutes.

5. Remove foil and continue to cook until cheese is bubbling and beginning to brown, about 30 minutes longer. Cool for 20 minutes (or less). Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons basil and serve.


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