Baked Rigatoni with Mozzarella and Tomato Sauce

baked rigatoni with mozzarella and tomato sauce
  • Yield: 8
  • Servings: 8
  • Prep Time: 10m
  • Cook Time: 1:15 h
  • Ready In: 1:25 h

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Baked rigatoni with mozzarella and tomato sauce.Rigatoni with smoked mozzarella and eggplant tomato sauce cooked in an oven. Very delicious Italian recipe. You can serve it as a side dish or main dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (480 g) uncooked rigatoni
  • 2 pounds (960 g) eggplant,diced
  • sea salt
  • olive oil
  • 2 sweet onions,peeled and diced
  • 5 cloves garlic,peeled and minced
  • 2 (28 oz (840 ml) each)) cans whole peeled Italian tomatoes,chopped and juice reserved
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup torn basil leaves
  • 6 ripe plum tomatoes,seeded and chopped
  • 1 pound smoked mozzarella cheese,sliced
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C).

Step 2

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add rigatoni and cook,according cooking instructions. Drain and rinse under cold water and set aside.

Step 3

Sweat the diced eggplants. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and place in a colander lined with paper towels. Close with a lid and allow to sweat for about 1 hour. Remove sweated diced eggplants from the colander. Pat dry with paper towels.

Step 4

In a large saute pan,heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add eggplants and saute until golden,for about 4-5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon,transfer eggplants to a plate and set aside.

Step 5

Using the same olive oil,sauté the onions over medium-high heat,stirring occasionally, until soft (for about 10 minutes). Stir in minced garlic and saute for a further 5 minutes. Stir in canned tomatoes with reserved juice,tomato paste, eggplant, red pepper flakes, oregano, parsley, brown sugar and salt and pepper to taste. Bring mixture to boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer,stirring occasionally,for about 15 minutes.

Step 6

Remove pan from the heat. Stir in fresh basil and chopped plum tomatoes.

Step 7

Spoon 1 cup (250 ml) of tomato sauce over the bottom of a 1 ½ quart lasagna pan. Toss cooked rigatoni with another cup of sauce. Beginning with the pasta, layer with smoked mozzarella cheese and sauce 2 times. Sprinkle the top evenly with grated Parmesan cheese.

Step 8

Bake in preheated oven for45-50 minuted or until bubbling and hot.

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