As most of you who have read this blog with any regularity know, I don't really "do" Italian food. I'm not the biggest pasta fan (I know, I am a freak, I also don't like ice cream either, believe it or not), and I went vegetarian before I really learned too awful much beyond homemade pasta sauce and pesto.
But Brett is a fan of the Italian food, vegetarian, meat laden, or otherwise, so I decided to be nice and make something he would really enjoy. When I asked him if I should get some meat to put it in, he requested a vegetarian version of Baked Ziti, so that is what I made!
The local booty legend (aka revealing my sources):
no asterisk = grocery store
+ = local produce from The Root Cellar
++ = The Peace Nook (will denote whether product is local or just from the Nook)
* = farmer's market
** = CSA
*** = Container or Community Garden
**** = the non-profit buying club, Blue Planet or Purcell Mountain Farms
Vegetarian Baked Ziti
For an 8x8 pan
1/2 box penne pasta (we used "mini penne"), cooked according to package directions
1 jar pasta sauce or 3-4 cups homemade (we used the St. Louis made Zia's pasta sauce, local and delicious!) +
1 package white button mushrooms, sliced
1 large yellow onion, chopped *
1 ball of fresh mozzarella, shredded
1/2 cup Gruyere, shredded
1 container whole milk fresh ricotta
2 tbsp safflower oil
Preheat oven to 350.
While noodles are cooking, heat oil in a large skillet. Add the mushrooms and onions, and saute for about 10 minutes or until soft.
Meanwhile combine ricotta with half the mozzarella and half the Gruyere. Combine the other half the of mozzarella and Gruyere.
Add the pasta sauce to the veggies and season with salt and pepper. Heat through.
Combine pasta and sauce/veggie mixture.
In an 8x8 baking pan, layer half the noodles and the ricotta mozzarella mixture, then the last layer of noodles and top with the mozzarella/Gruyere mixture.
Bake uncovered for about an hour until top is golden brown and contents are bubbling.