Ziti with Baked Tomatoes

Ziti with baked tomatoes

My mother-in-law is a vegetarian.  When she is coming to visit, I have to admit, this is often my go-to dish.  After about three consecutive times serving it to her (never remembering that I had served it the last time she visited), I asked if I had before.  She was gracious and kind and said – “well, yes – this is all you serve, isn’t it?  But I LOVE it.”  I pressed and indeed, she said it was a hit with her – which I agreed; but I have evolved and look to mix things up when she comes for visits now.

It always amazes me how flavorful smelling this dish is as the tomatoes bake in the oven.  The result is a fresh, light sauce that can warm your soul on a cold snowy day or be just the perfect light summer meal.

Directions

Serves Four
Time:  60 minutes Preparation

2 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature -for buttering the baking dish)
3 pints grape tomatoes – halved. 2 red, 1 yellow (the color combination is nice – but you could use all red if you wanted)
3-4 cloves minced garlic
2-3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoons red pepper flakes (more if desired)
½ cup chopped flat leave parsley
½ cup Italian flavored bread crumbs
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

16-ounce box of short pasta – penne, ziti, farfalle (prepared according to package directions)

Method:

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Combine all ingredients, except bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese in a bowl. Add to a buttered 8 x 8 baking dish. Sprinkle top with bread crumbs.  Bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes.

Cook your favorite pasta according to directions. Drain, then toss with fresh Parmesan cheese.

Combine with baked tomatoes mixture and serve immediately.

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A great day for me is preparing great meals for friends and family. I enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and also updating classics that I've enjoyed for years. I love to travel and try lots of new cuisines - and wouldn't be anything without the love of my family!

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