Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Baked Broccoli and Mushroom Pasta

You won’t miss the meat in this hearty, cheesy, mushroomy baked pasta dish, with broccoli, basil, and rosemary added for that green factor. I chose cream cheese and goat cheese for the filling, but you can substitute any soft, creamy cheeses you like—it’s all good.

Serves 4

  • 3.5 oz cream cheese, room temperature and pinched into small pieces
  • 2.5 oz goat cheese, room temperature and pinched into small pieces
  • 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary, divided
  • 1 tbsp thinly sliced fresh basil, divided, plus more for garnish
  • 7 oz rotini (or other semi-short pasta)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided, plus more for oiling dish
  • 8 oz button mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups very small broccoli florets (or medium, chopped)
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1-1/2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup finely shredded asiago cheese

Prepared Ingredients
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine the cream cheese, goat cheese, eggs, half the rosemary, and half the basil in a large bowl.
  3. Boil the pasta according to package directions and drain. Add to the bowl with the cream cheese mixture.
  4. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon oil, swirling to coat. Add the mushrooms, broccoli, garlic, remaining rosemary, and other half of the divided basil (save some extra for garnish).
  5. Season with salt and pepper and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated and the vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool 5 minutes, then add to the pasta mixture, stirring well to combine all the ingredients.

Cheese Mixture

Cheese and Pasta

Beginning to Cook

Cooked Vegetables

Vegetables Added
  1. Lightly oil an 11 X 7-inch baking dish. Spoon the pasta mixture into the dish, spreading to an even thickness. Spoon the crushed tomatoes on top and sprinkle with asiago cheese.

Ready for Topping

Ready to Bake
Bake uncovered until bubbly and beginning to brown, 30-35 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest 5 minutes. Garnish with basil and serve.

Baked Broccoli and Mushroom Pasta

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