PASTA BAKE WITH SUN DRIED TOMATO PESTO, RICOTTA, ASIAGO & CANNELLINI BEANS
- 1 Lb Cavatappi Pasta
- 2 Tbsp Kosher Salt
- 1 Can Cannellini Beans
- 1 Lb Ricotta Cheese
- 8 Oz Asiago Cheese (Shredded)
- 1/2 Cup Reserve Pasta Water
- 1/2 Cup Olive Oil
- 1/2 Cup Sun Dried Tomatoes (In Oil)
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Basil Leaves
- 3 Cloves Garlic
- 1/3 Cup Pine Nuts (Toasted)
- 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese (Shredded)
- 1/2 Cup Olive Oil
Bring 1 1/2 gallons of water to a boil. Add 2 tablespoons of Kosher salt. Add pasta and stir. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook pasta very al dente, about 3-4 minutes less than package recommendations (pasta will finish cooking when baked.) Reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water, drain remaining water and rinse pasta in cool water to stop the cooking process. Reserve pasta and 1/4 cup pasta water.
Drain sun dried tomatoes and add to food processor bowl. Add remaining ingredients for pesto and process till smooth.
Preheat oven 400 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, combine sundried tomato pesto, reserved pasta water, and 1/2 cup olive oil. Stir to combine. Drain cannellini beans. Add beans and cooked pasta to pesto. Stir to combine. Transfer 1/2 of
the pasta mixture to 8” x 10” casserole dish. Add 1/2 pound of ricotta by dropping spoonfuls of ricotta over pasta. Sprinkle with 1/2 of the shredded Asiago cheese. Add remaining pasta mixture to the casserole dish. Top with the other half of ricotta, dropped in spoonfuls over the top of pasta. Sprinkle top with remaining Asiago cheese. Bake at 400 degrees about 20 minutes or until top is golden brown. Serve pasta hot with a side Caesar Salad and LangeTwins Redtail Nero d’Avola.
You can cook the pasta and make the pesto the day before. You can even assemble the casserole the day before and just pop in the oven to heat. If you prepared the casserole the day before, refrigerate overnight, and remove from fridge 30 minutes before baking to bring to room temperature so it will heat more evenly.