Pasta and Tomato Al Forno Print Email

A simple Italian style side dish with a flavor and texture that sure to please! Perfect as a side dish with roasted beef, pork or poultry.

1 pound Italian tube pasta (penne, rigatoni) or potato gnocchi
4 oz pancetta, minced
1-2 TBS olive oil, more as needed
1 cup slivered onion
1 clove garlic, crushed
24 oz homemade or Italian marinara sauce (recipe follows)
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1/2 cup Asiago cheese, grated
1/2 cup breadcrumbs

Prepare the pasta according to package directions – the pasta will also be cooked in sauce, so do not overcook and do not rinse. Adjust rack to top 1/4 of oven and preheat to 425 degrees.

In a heavy skillet, sauté the pancetta and oil until lightly browned. Add onions and garlic and sauté until tender. Add marinara sauce and simmer to marry and then toss with cooked pasta. Toss Parmigiano with the Asiago and breadcrumbs, moistening lightly with a drizzle of olive oil.

Pour pasta and sauce into one or more oiled casserole pans. Sprinkle the cheese and breadcrumb medley over the top and brown in the top of hot oven until brown and sizzling. Rest 5-10 minutes before serving. Serves 4-6. – Chef Michaelangelo (mick) Rosacci

Perfect Accompaniments: Roast beef or Standing Rib, meatloaf, roast chicken or turkey, pork roast or grilled pork chops, ribs, bison patties or steaks, lean game birds.

Basic Marinara
A quick sauce with unlimited flexibility; perfect with pan or roasted pasta dishes.

Olive oil
Garlic, minced or mashed
Tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped or crushed from a can
Oregano, pref. Fresh
Crushed red pepper
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat plenty of oil in a saucepan, add garlic and cook just until it starts to brown. Add crushed tomatoes and oregano. Cook over medium heat until most of the liquid evaporates. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss with pasta and serve.

*Variations: Pancetta, capers, onions, shallots, fresh herbs, carrots, celery and assorted veggies, wine, etc.---