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Old 04-11-2009, 11:07 AM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Maryland
Posts: 89
Baked pasta with veggies?

Hey all,

Ever since seeing Alton Brown bake brown rice on Good Eats, I've never done it any other way. It always turns out perfect for my tastes -- and I usually dress it up with cumin, garlic powder, or other spices and an assortment of rinsed canned beans or frozen veggies.

I was wondering if anyone knew the correct amount of liquid/time/temperature wth which to bake 1 to 1.5 cups (about 2-4 oz) of dry pasta and assorted frozen veggies in the oven. Would this even produce satisfactory results? I'll be using the whole grain barilla pasta (either rotini or penne) and a glass baking dish. The best way to think of it is like a naked casserole with no meat or sauce haha. I was planning on adding the sauce/cheese to the cooked product afterwards.

Thanks for the input ;D


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Old 04-11-2009, 11:54 AM   #2
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Culpeper, VA
Posts: 5,806
While others who've had experience with this might feel differently, I personally would not cook this the way you're thinking. You'd need to add quite a bit of liquid to get the pasta to cook properly, & before the pasta cooked, your vegetables would be mush. Plus (& I purchase Barilla pasta almost exclusively), Barilla's whole-grain pastas take longer to cook than regular pasta, which just makes the situation worse. In addition, while some recipes are tailored to cooking dry pasta directly in the sauced finished dish in the oven, just tossing dry pasta & vegetables in water in the oven doesn't make much sense.

What I do when I'm making a pasta casserole with vegetables (fresh broccoli being my favorite to add) is cook the pasta until just a tiny bit beneath "al dente", adding the broccoli florets in during the last 2 minutes of pasta cooking (for frozen veggies, toss into the water just the last minute or so & allow the water to come back up to a boil). Meanwhile, make your sauce. Drain pasta/broccoli (or veggie) mixture & carefully combine with your sauce right in your greased casserole/baking dish. Sprinkle top with additional cheese &/or bread crumbs, dot with some butter (optional), & bake in a 350-degree oven until hot & bubbly (about 25-30 minutes). Let rest for about 10 minutes before serving.

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Old 04-12-2009, 05:08 AM   #3
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Maryland
Posts: 89
Thanks Breezy -- I admit it's kind of crazy. I'll suck it up and boil it on the stovetop like everyone else :D
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