GINNA PARSONS: Baked pasta with veggies very tasty

Sometimes, I can just look at a recipe – especially if it has an accompanying photograph – and know it’s going to be good. That’s what happened with the Baked Ziti and Summer Veggies recipe from a recent issue of Cooking Light magazine.
I was in the breakroom at work when I came upon it and immediately turned to anyone who would listen and said, “Look at this dish. I’m going to make it for dinner.”
Because I had been to the Farmers’ Market earlier in the day, I had already purchased squash, zucchini and homegrown tomatoes. So all I had to get at the grocery store was some Mozzarella cheese and a carton of Ricotta.
As I was preparing the dish that night, my son, Patrick, came into the kitchen and asked if we could have McDonald’s for dinner. I said no, because I was cooking a new recipe.
He looked crestfallen.
Then, I showed him the picture in the magazine.
“Hey, that actually looks pretty good,” he said.
And it was. So good, in fact, that Patrick had two servings and daughter Mary and I both cleaned our plates. Husband Charlie was out of town that night and missed out on the deliciousness, but he was sure to take leftovers with him the next day for lunch.

Baked Ziti and Summer Veggies
5 ounces uncooked ziti or penne pasta
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 heaping cups chopped yellow squash
1 heaping cup chopped zucchini
1⁄2 cup chopped onion
2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup shredded part-skim Mozzarella cheese, divided
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
3⁄4 teaspoon salt, divided
1⁄8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1⁄4 cup part-skim Ricotta cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Cook pasta according to package directions
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan. Add squash, zucchini, and onion; sauté 5 minutes. Add tomato and garlic; sauté 3 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in pasta, 1⁄2 cup Mozzarella, herbs, 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, and pepper.
Combine Ricotta, remaining salt, and egg. Stir into pasta mixture. Spoon into an 8-inch square glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray; sprinkle with remaining Mozzarella. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until bubbly and browned.
Serves 6.
Ginna Parsons is the Daily Journal’s food/home/garden editor.

Ginna Parsons/NEMS Daily Journal