Baked Pasta Primavera

Tuesday, April 19th 2016, 8:40 am
By: News On 6


1 eggplant, sliced ½-inch thick

1 zucchini, sliced ½-inch thick

1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper

1 (12-ounce) bag Della Terra pasta, such as campanelle or fusilli

½ pound Greer’s Ranch House bacon

1 onion, chopped

4 tablespoons Hiland butter

1/3 cup Shawnee Mills All-Purpose Flour

1 quart Hiland whole milk

16 ounces ricotta cheese

3 tablespoons Lovera’s Garlic and Basil Pesto

1 cup shredded Lovera’s Caciocavera cheese, divided

1 ball fresh mozzarella, sliced


Place eggplant and zucchini on a sheet pan, and sprinkle both sides with kosher salt. Let sit for about 30 minutes. Shake off excess water. Place eggplant, zucchini and asparagus on a large sheet pan. (You may need to use two pans if your vegetables are too crowded.) Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Bake in a preheated 425-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, turning halfway through.

Fry bacon over medium heat in a saute pan. Once crisp, remove bacon and set aside. Reserve 1 tablespoon bacon drippings, and discard the remaining drippings. Cook chopped onion in bacon drippings. Set onions aside.

In same pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour, stirring until lightly brown. Gradually add milk, one cup at a time, whisking or stirring until bubbly and thickened. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, then drizzle with olive oil.

In a small bowl, combine ricotta cheese, pesto and ½ cup caciocavera cheese. Add cooked onions and crumbled bacon, and stir.

In a 9-by-13-inch pan, pour a small amount of white sauce into bottom of pan. Layer with half of pasta, then half of vegetables, then half of ricotta mixture, then half of white sauce. Place half the slices of mozzarella over white sauce. Layer again with pasta, vegetables, ricotta and white sauce, ending with slices of mozzarella. Sprinkle with remaining ½ cup caciocavera cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes.