Tomato and green bean pasta bake

    (1)

    If you happen to have plenty of fine green beans this summer, have a go at making this simple Italian baked pasta dish. If you do not have the time or the will to make your own tomato sauce, just use a good quality jarred sauce.


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    Ingredients
    Serves: 4 

    • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
    • 600g passata or finely chopped tomatoes
    • salt, to taste
    • 200g fresh fine green beans, trimmed
    • 400g caserecce or any short pasta
    • 200g scamorza or mozzarella cheese, cubed
    • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for topping

    Method
    Prep:10min  ›  Cook:30min  ›  Ready in:40min 

    1. To make tomato sauce: Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat; add onion and cook for a couple of minutes or until just coloured. Add tomatoes, turn up the heat and bring to the boil. Bring back to medium heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until it's time to use it. Season with salt to taste.
    2. Cook the green beans in a large pot with abundant salted water. After 2 to 3 minutes add pasta to the same pot. Drain pasta and green beans 2 minutes before the end of pasta's cooking time.
    3. Preheat the oven to 200 C / Gas 6.
    4. Add 1 ladle of tomato sauce on the bottom of a baking dish. Place the pasta and green beans in a bowl and add remaining tomato sauce, cubed mozzarella and 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese. Mix and transfer into the baking dish; scatter a handful of grated Parmesan cheese over the top.
    5. Bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, until golden brown. If necessary, transfer the dish to the top rack of the oven and finish off under the grill.

    Calculating cooking time:

    Remember that pasta needs to cook 2 minutes less than suggested cooking time for best results. When calculating, consider that green beans will need to cook for about 10 minutes. So, for example, if pasta package says it needs 10 minutes to cook, add it to the pot 2 minutes after the green beans, so it will cook 8 minutes.

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