It's no secret that when it comes to being in the kitchen I'm much less likely to whip up a casserole than cupcakes. Generally speaking I find baking much more soothing and much easier. Cooking, to me, can be stressful, time consuming, and it doesn't make much room for my disorganization. I'm horrible at multi-tasking and when I'm trying to cook a meal, it really starts to show. Because god-forbid I should be able to tear some greens while I have to stir a pot of soup.
However, I've recently come across Barefoot Contessa Family Style: Easy Ideas and Recipes That Make Everyone Feel Like Family by Ina Garten. I hadn't realized it before, but her recipes are very functional and not as intimidating as some of the other cooking recipes I've faced in my days. And by my days I mean the last year or so. I have a tendency to be a bit over-dramatic.
Ina's recipe for Penne with Five Cheeses was the first thing that caught my eye and I instantly knew that I had to make it. The recipe had a huge list of delicious ingredients with only a few simple steps, which for a simple folk like me, was absolutely perfect.
Not to mention the amazing picture of it was pretty compelling as well.
Penne with Five Cheeses via Barefoot Contessa
Serves | 6
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup crushed tomatoes in thick tomato paste
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
1/2 cup shredded imported Italian fontina
1/4 cup crumbled Italian Gorgonzola
2 tbsp. ricotta cheese
1/4 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced
1 pound imported penne rigate pasta
4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1. Preheat the oven to 500'F.
2. In a large stockpot, bring 5 quarts of salted water to a boil.
3. Except the penne and butter, combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix it well.
4. Parboil the penne in the boiling water for approximately 4 minutes. Drain the pasta in a colander and add it to the bowl of mixed ingredients and toss it to combine.
5. Divide the pasta dish evenly in to 6 shallow ceramic gratin dishes (1 1/2 to 2 cup capacity). Top with a bit of butter. Bake for 7-10 minutes until bubbly and the top is brown.
Until next time, happy baking!