27 August 2007

Can she do anything else with zucchini???????Baked Vegetable Spaghetti

Baked Vegetable Spaghetti
Today was a rainy sort of day. Yesterday I was sitting at the beach reading and today I am nesting and preparing food for the winter. I sound like a squirrel...I do LOVE nuts!!!! We are not huge casserole fans around here, but, this is one of my favourite down home ways to use up that zucchini at the end of the season. My daughter will be living at the dorms at university, so, I can eat what I love and enjoy....lovely shepherd's pie, meatloaf and garlic mashed potatoes, robust stews....you name it she doesn't like it. I tried to move her over to comfort foods, but, she is more of a Thai/stir-fry kind'a gal. I love those foods too, but there is nothing wrong with a casserole. Must be a generational thing.



This has been a Canadian Living magazine favourite of mine for years. I love the smooth texture of the bechamel/cheese sauce melting on top and the marriage of ratatouille flavours inside.

Since it was a rainy day and I had all the ingredients taking up room in my refrigerator it was inevitable that I should make this dish.

I am sending it over to Ruth for Presto Pasta Night at http://onceuponafeast.blogspot.com/. She always has such a great line-up of pastas from all over the globe provided by many talented bloggers.


**Baked Vegetable Spaghetti**

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 medium zucchini, diced
1 each sweet red and yellow pepper, diced
1 eggplant, peeled and diced
2 cans (19-oz) tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
2 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon each dried oregano, granulated sugar and salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 lb spaghetti (serves 8)
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Cheese Sauce:

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

In a Dutch oven, heat half of the oil over medium-high heat; cook onions, garlic, zucchini, sweet peppers and eggplant for 5 - 10 minutes, stirring, or until starting to soften. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, oregano, sugar, salt, pepper and thyme; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 25 - 30 minutes or until slightly thickened.

Cheese Sauce: In saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat; whisk in flour and cook, whisking for 2 minutes, without browning. Whisk in milk and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and cook, whisking, for about 10 minutes or until thickened. Stir in mozzarella, salt and pepper; cook stirring, until cheese melts. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Meanwhile, in large pot of boiling salted water, cook spaghetti for 5 minutes or until still very firm. Drain; toss with remaining olive oil and vegetable mixture. Transfer spaghetti mixture to a 13 x 9-inch baking dish (3 litre); spoon cheese sauce over top. Sprinkle with Parmesan.

(Can be cooled, covered and refrigerated up to 1 day, or freeze for up to 2 weeks; let thaw in refrigerator for 48 hours. Add 10 minutes to baking time).

Bake, uncovered, on baking sheet in 350F oven for about 1 hour or until golden and heated through.

Serves 8

You are reading this post on More Than Burnt Toast at http://morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author/owner of More Than Burnt Toast. All rights reserved by Valerie Harrison.
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11 comments:

  1. This sounds really interesting and looks tasty. I have never baked spaghetti before. It has a lot of great vegetables as well.

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  2. That looks great! My husband does love casseroles, but I tend to stay away from them because of a) calories and b) cream soups - they kill my tummy. This one, however, is a-okay and I think I'll try it soon!

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  3. in italy it is a tradition to a a 'pasticiata" or 'bake ' with leftover pasta. they always add some cheese becahmel and just bake it. nothing goes waste. and the good part is that it tastes wonderful as well

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  4. I am a casserole, comfort food kind of girl. I can't wait for the weather to cool down! This looks fabulous!

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  5. Valli, you can cook this up for me anytime - this looks delicious. My kind of omfort food. And it's using ingredients I usually have in my fridge and pantry.

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  6. Mmmm, I would love to try this soon. Perhaps in a week my teeth will have healed enough to enjoy pasta again!

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  7. Would have never thought of this. Looks very good.

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  8. Thanks for checking out my site guys!!Kevin, Deborah,Nora and Nirmala...try a casserole or two ...hope you will like them!!!
    Thanks for commenting Abby---no cream soups here although I am not opposed to them by any means!!!!
    Ritu..the Italian word sounds very much like Pastitsio in Greek...come to think of it it has a layer of bechamel on top as well!!!
    Cindy hope you get over the wisdom teeth extraction soon so you can enjoy all those good foods!!!!

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  9. mmmm..but you guys...presto pasta isnt until FRIDAY. My weeks fly by fast enough without you lot speeding them along...
    >;( <---Marye's mad face

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  10. The zucchini spaghetti looks delicious. Interesting that your daughter's version of comfort food is like MY daughter's version....mine on the other hand, is just like yours.

    Thanks for sharing the spaghetti with Presto Pasta Nights.

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  11. I would never have thought of putting spaghetti in a pasta bake, what a good idea! It looks delicious and as ! haven't had dinner yet, I am now ravenous!

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Welcome to my home. Thank you so much for choosing to stay a while and for sharing our lives through food. I appreciate all your comments, suggestions, daily encouragement and support.

Val

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