Thursday, August 25, 2011

Recipe Swap: Baked Rigatoni with Spinach and Meatballs


The theme for this recipe swap was "Italian." Considering I'm like 1/8th Sicilian, I was excited. I love love love Italian food, more than Snooki from Jersey Shore loves to tan, and that girl LOVES to tan.

Anyways, I can always use some more pasta recipes and this one is a keeper. I received this one from the Jey of Cooking. I knew it would be good since I've made a few of her recipes before and they have all been delicious.

Updated 8/29: Here is the link for the Italian Recipe Swap Roundup.

Baked Rigatoni with Spinach and Meatballs

Baked Meatballs
1 lb ground beef
1/2 cup Panko
1/4 cup Parmesan
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 egg, lightly beaten
splash of milk
splash of Worcestershire
salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 425º. Combine ingredients and mix by hand. Form into balls and place on a lightly oiled, foil lined baking sheet. Bake for 12-25 minutes, until browned and cooked through.

Baked Rigatoni with Spinach and Meatballs
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, smashed and sliced
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
1 jar pasta sauce
1 box rigatoni, cooked al dente
16 oz bag of baby spinach, chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 container ricotta
1/4 cup Parmesan
1 container baby mozzarella balls, halved
Baked Meatballs (see above recipe)
1 pinch Nutmeg
salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350º. Warm olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook 10 minutes. Reduce heat to low, add sauce and cook and additional 10 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl, combine spinach, parsley, ricotta, parmesan, and nutmeg. Add pasta, meatballs, and sauce and mix to combine. Reserve some sauce for serving.

Transfer to baking dish and top with mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake until browned, about 5 minutes.


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