It’s been a while since I’ve posted, and A LOT has happened in my life in the past few months. In August, I packed up my bags, said goodbye to my friends and family, and moved to New Orleans. I’ve been trying to get myself situated over the past several weeks, but there has been no shortage in good cookin’ (I’ve just neglected to update my blog).
I’ve wanted to make baked macaroni and cheese for years, but I’ve always been too cheap to buy all the ingredients (I know, it’s ridiculous considering how much I buy in groceries anyway—but still). Today I said screw it and grabbed all the odds and ends I never have lying around my house. The recipe was adapted from the Kitchn’s recipe, found here.
~Baked Pasta Casserole~
- 12 oz. tri-color rotini (or other small pasta of your choosing)
- 2 large handfuls of baby spinach
- 2 large handfuls chopped kale
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 2 1/2c. mild cheddar, shredded
- 1 1/2c. low fat cottage cheese
- 3/4c. low fat sour cream
- 3 red bell peppers
- salt, pepper, oregano to taste
- nutritional yeast
1. First, heat oven to 500°. Remove stems from red bell peppers and cut into long, thin strips. Place in cast iron skillet or small baking pan and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 40 minutes, stirring semi-frequently with tongs.
2. While peppers are roasting, boil rotini until al dente (you don’t want to overcook it, because it will continue to cook in the oven later). Drain immediately and transfer to a large bowl.
3. Add spinach and kale to cooked pasta, cover, and let greens wilt.
4. In a separate bowl, combine eggs, 2 cups cheddar, cottage cheese, sour cream, and spices. Slowly mix together with pasta.
5. Place pasta mixture in a greased 3-quart casserole dish.
6. When peppers are very soft, hold them in batches with a set of tongs and slice the peppers into smaller chunks. Gently stir peppers into casserole.
7. Reduce heat to 350°. Top casserole with remaining cheddar and a generous sprinkle of nutritional yeast (enough to evenly cover the top of the casserole).
8. Bake, covered with foil, for 30 minutes. Then, remove foil and bake an additional 15 minutes.
9. Let cool 10-20 minutes before serving to allow casserole to set.
Enjoy! This is comfort food at its finest!