Lil’ bit of it all ‘Pasta Bake’

For once, I decided to get a bit creative and not follow a recipe. I had some cooked Farfalle pasta in the freezer and stuff I needed to use in the fridge and I was starving so I got to work. Now, I did not make anything grand or sophisticated. Just a simple dish with simple ingredients. It’s fun when you can add whatever you like and then figure out what else you could have added or need to omit next time. I have not given any quantity of ingredients because you can use however much you choose–it’s up to you. Make it as spicy as you like or not spicy at all. Use as much cilantro, scallions, onions, etc. as your heart desires. Saute after each ingredient, then mix and cook for just a few minutes before you pop it into the oven.

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I had ramps, scallions and cilantro. In they go!
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The stuff in the small clear bowl (should have taken a better picture of it) is a combination of butter, salt, garlic powder, Parmesan cheese, parsley flakes and oregano. It was leftover topping from when I had baked garlic knots so in that goes!
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Chop up your scallions and ramps. Start by sauteing for a few minutes, the white part of the scallions, all the ramps and the stuff in the white bowl 😉
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Throw in half a chopped red onion and saute some more.
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For a little color and sweet taste, toss in some chopped red pepper. Add some salt and pepper along the way.
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Add some chopped cilantro, parsley or what have you.
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Throw in a can of diced tomatoes and squirt a few squirts of tomato paste, just because. Mix it up.
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In the meantime, roast some corn in a pan. I microwaved the corn wrapped in a damp towel for a minute and then cut off the kernels with a knife.
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For yet some more color and more sweetness, toss in the corn.
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Ah, what the heck..I had some chicken broth feeling lonely in the fridge so I grabbed it and poured what was left in the container..probably about 2/3 or 3/4 of a cup. Don’t make it too liquidy. You can’t mess this up unless you throw in some weird stuff…
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Mix it up real nice. Oh and please note that if you have any leftover white wine you may substitute for the broth.
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I added some more oregano. I used Mexican oregano, which has a different smell and taste but you can use plain. Some hot sauce I had bought form Puerto Rico made from Scotch Bonnet peppers. I forgot that the diced tomatoes had chilies so this dish was extra spicy 🙂
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Add the pasta. If using, now would be an excellent time to drink the rest of the wine 🙂
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Cut up some of that turkey. Ham or bacon would be great too but I usually have turkey in my fridge as I am trying to be healthy darn it!
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Put it all in a casserole dish and sprinkle with the chopped turkey and green part of the scallions. I used an 8 x 8 inch dish.
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Ah, yes, the cheese–say hello to Messrs. Colby, Monterey, and Pepper Jack.
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Smother it with cheese. What? it’s healthy!
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Then smother with breadcrumbs. The more, the merrier. Don’t ever forget to look at the dish lovingly and smile. Always do this before you cook/bake and after.
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In the oven it goes at 350% F for 20-25 minutes until a bit browned. Then in the broiler for a a minute or two until it is nice and brown. Don’t leave it in the broiler without constantly checking, otherwise you will have a lil’ bit of it all blackened pasta bake. Look at it lovingly and smile–unless you have burnt it.
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There we have it. Simple, colorful and flavorful. Yes, and spicy!
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Dig in!

Ingredients:

About 1/2 a box of cooked Farfalle pasta [Or any kind of leftover cooked pasta]

1 Sweet pepper, chopped [any kind]

1/2 or 1 Onion, chopped

2-3 garlic cloves, minced or a bunch of ramps, chopped

1/2 a bunch or less of cilantro, chopped [parsley or basil would work too]

1 ear of corn, kernels separated and roasted [or frozen corn]

1 can petite diced tomatoes (I used a can of petite diced tomatoes with green chilies),

2/3 or 3/4 chicken broth or white wine 🙂

4 deli turkey slices, chopped [use ham or chicken if you wish]

A mix of Colby and Monterey Jack, Pepperjack and Monterey Jack Cheese (any kind you have on hand and as much as you like :))

Breadcrumbs (as much as you like)

2-3 tbsp Tomato paste

Hot sauce [any kind and as much as you can handle!]

Remember–you can always play around with the quantity, it is not set in stone!

Now get cooking! Please 🙂

 

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