Sun 9 Jan 2011
This is a delicious vegetarian pasta dish from Lucy Waverman that was published in the December 14, 2010 issue of The Globe and Mail. Vegetables are tossed with herbs and balsamic vinegar and are then roasted until brown and caramelized.
They are then combined with cooked penne, butter, milk, cream and three kinds of cheese and baked until piping hot. Served with a green salad, this would be perfect for a casual dinner party.
To avoid additives and preservatives in this recipe, use a balsamic vinegar with no sulfites added and cheese that does not contain colour.
2 medium red onions
4½ cups small butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 red peppers, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 zucchini, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 eggplant, cut into 1-inch chunks
4 plum tomatoes, quartered and seeded
1 banana pepper, sliced on diagonal into thin strips
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary or 2 teaspoons dried
¼ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 pound (500 grams) penne
¼ cup butter
¼ cup flour
2 cups milk
½ cup whipping cream
1 cup grated Fontina
1 8-ounce (250-gram) ball fresh mozzarella, grated
1 cup grated Parmesan
Preheat oven to 450 F. Cut onions in half and cut each half into 4 wedges. Remove root end and separate onion pieces. Combine onion, butternut squash, red peppers, zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes and banana pepper in a large bowl.
Combine thyme, rosemary, olive oil and vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Toss with vegetables until well coated. Divide all vegetables between 2 large rimmed baking sheets and roast for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes and switching tray positions in oven halfway through, until vegetables are cooked through and browned. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 350 F.
Cook pasta in boiling salted water according to package directions until slightly undercooked. Drain. Return to pot.
Heat butter in another pot over medium-high heat. Add flour and stir together until smooth. Combine milk and cream and slowly add to pot, whisking constantly, until combined. Bring to a boil, remove from heat and add Fontina, mozzarella and ½ cup Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper.
Add sauce to pasta and toss to combine. Stir in vegetables. Transfer to an oiled 9 x 13-inch baking dish and bake for 30 minutes or until sauce bubbles and mixture is hot. Sprinkle with remaining ½ cup Parmesan and lots of black pepper. Serves 8.
By Lucy Waverman in the December 14, 2010 issue of The Globe and Mail