Monday, January 2, 2012

Williams Sonoma Baked Ziti

This was delicious!!!  Hubby doesn't like baked ziti because it's just....baked ziti.  This one he loves.  He rated it a 9.5 just because he can't quite get it up to those few things that are his favorite.  :)  The kids all gave it a 9.5 to a 10 so that means it stays in the rotation!!!  I changed the recipe a bit to make sure it was enough for my family so I'll post the link to the original recipe but I'll post what I actually made.

Here's the original recipe:

Here's mine:

Baked Ziti with Eggplant and Sausage

4 tsp. plus 1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/2" cubes
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup dry red wine
1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes
1 can (16 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 lb. ziti, cooked until al dente
2 Tbsp. dried basil
1/3 cup rinsed, chopped Kalamata olives
2 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

1.  In a 10" nonstick fry pan over medium high heat, warm 2 tsp. of the olive oil.  Add the sausage and cook, stirring and crumbling with a wooden spoon, until browned, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

2.  Discard all but 1 Tbsp. of the fat in the pan.  Set the pan over medium-high heat and warm 2 tspl of the olive oil.  Add the eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and browned, about 6 minutes.  Transfer to a large bowl.

3.  Set the pan over medium heat and warm the remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil.  Add the onion and cook until softened, 5-6 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook 1 minute.  Add the wine, increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, stirring to scrape up the browned bits.  Cook until the liquid is almost evaporated, about 3 minutes.  Add the tomatoes and their juices and simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes.

4.  Add the sausage, basil, olives, 2 cups of the mozzarella and the tomato sauce to the bowl with the eggplant and stir to combine.  Add to the pasta (use a large bowl or the pot the pasta was cooked in).  Season with the salt and pepper.  Transfer the pasta mixture to a large casserole and sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella and the Parmigiano-Reggiano on top.  Transfer to the oven and bake for 25 -30 minutes.  Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

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