I’m a sucker for baked pasta deliciousness…especially with a Fancy Nancy name like ‘mostaccioli’ (basically a smaller form of penne).  This is borrowed from ‘More Diners, Drive-ins and Dives’, by Guy Fieri and I used Barilla’s Penne Lisce – bake it in a pie plate! and it will make everyone’s day…enjoy!

Baked Mostaccioli

Sauce – enough for 2 lbs. of pasta or 2 large meals

2 lbs. lean ground beef

6 cloves of garlic, minced

1 onion, finely diced

1 can (369 mL/13 oz) tomato paste

1 can (650 mL) tomato puree

1 can (796 mL/28 oz) crushed tomatoes

1 T. EACH ‘Better Than Bouillon’ beef AND chicken base, dissolved into 3 c. hot water

1/2 c. grated Parmesan AND 2 t. Montreal Steak Spice

1 t. EACH garlic salt, dried basil AND dried parsley

Baked Pasta – for 1 large, full pie plate

1 box (454 g) Barilla Penne Lisce

3-4 c. sauce (above)

1 c. EACH grated mozzarella AND old cheddar

extra mozzarella, cheddar or Parmesan for garnish

To make the sauce – Heat up a couple of tablespoons of canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and add in the beef and garlic with a sprinkling of salt and a really good grinding of fresh pepper.  Cook until the beef is cooked through, breaking it up as you go and then set it aside – or put it into a bowl and use the same skillet for the next step.

In the same, or a second large skillet, heat up another 2 tablespoons or so of oil over medium-high heat and cook and stir the onion for a few minutes until it’s softened, then add in the tomato paste, puree and crushed tomatoes.  Add in the bouillons (dissolved in the 3 cups of water), the Parmesan and 4 spices and bring it all to a simmer.  Add the cooked beef back in, bring it back to a simmer and allow it to cook, uncovered for about an hour, stirring occasionally.  Taste for spices and get your pasta cooking.

For the baked pasta pie plate – Preheat the oven to 350, spray a large, deep-dish pie plate, place it onto a large, parchment-lined baking sheet and cook your pasta according to package directions in salted water until al dente.  Drain the pasta well, and put it back into the pasta pot with 2 + cups of sauce, the mozzarella and the cheddar.  Mound the mixture into your pie plate, top with about 1 more cup of sauce and extra cheese and bake for 25- 30 minutes until it’s bubbling and golden.  Dive in!

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