Pasta transformed into pie . . . is there anything more that needs to be said to describe the brilliance of this dish?
OK fine, I’ll keep going. Imagine spaghetti, boiled until al dente, mixed together with well-seasoned, roasted-until-tender vegetables, tossed in a creamy, cheesy sauce, topped with even more cheese (obviously) and baked until bubbly, golden and perfectly set. Now imagine that in your mouth . . . or, instead of daydreaming until you salivate, make it for dinner tonight!
Nothing about this dish is difficult; rather, it’s surprisingly effortless. You likely have most of these ingredients and if you don’t, the vegetables are completely interchangeable — asparagus, yellow squash, or mushrooms would be lovely swaps or additions.
If you, or any smaller humans in your life, are struggling to get enough veggies in your diet, this is a creative way to work them in. It’s spaghetti, after all, in deep-dish pie form, and as I mentioned earlier . . .enough said.
Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
1 1⁄2 cups sliced zucchini (from 1 zucchini)
1 1⁄2 cups cherry tomatoes
1 cup chopped yellow bell pepper (from 1 bell pepper)
1 cup sliced red onion (from 1 small onion)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1⁄2 teaspoons kosher salt
1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
12 ounces uncooked spaghetti
1 cup half-and-half
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup pre-shredded mozzarella cheese
Chopped fresh parsley
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the zucchini, tomatoes, bell pepper, and red onion on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the oil, and sprinkle with 1⁄2 teaspoon of the salt and 1⁄4 teaspoon of the black pepper; toss to coat evenly. Bake until the vegetables are tender and lightly browned, stirring once, about 20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package directions for al dente; drain.
3. Whisk together the half-and-half, eggs, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper in a medium bowl. Add the cooked pasta and 1⁄2 cup each of the Parmesan and mozzarella, tossing to coat. Add the vegetables, and toss gently. Transfer to a lightly greased 9 1⁄2-inch deep-dish pie pan. Sprinkle with the remaining 1⁄2 cup each Parmesan and mozzarella. Bake until set and cheese has browned, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven, and let stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with parsley.
Siri Daly is a Today show tastemaker and author of Siriously Delicious: 100 Nutritious (and Not So Nutritious) Simple Recipes for the Real Home Cook.
Excerpted from Siriously Delicious by Siri Daly. Copyright © 2018 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Meredith Corporation. New York, NY. All rights reserved.