This baked penne dish has layers of flavour and texture that make every bite exciting! Penne gets tossed with spinach in sun-dried tomato pesto and topped with Parmesan, balsamic roasted tomatoes and dollops of herb ricotta. The drizzle of balsamic glaze over top adds a delicious sweetness to round out every forkful!
Produced in a facility that processes milk, sesame, eggs, fish, shellfish, crustaceans, mustard, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, soybean and sulphites.
Tomato Sauce Base
Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto(ContainsMilk)
Parmesan Cheese, shredded(ContainsMilk)
Ciabatta Roll(ContainsGluten, Barley)
Before starting, preheat the oven to 450˚F.Remove 2 tbsp butter (dbl for 4 ppl) from the fridge and set aside to come up to room temperature. Add 10 cups water and 2 tsp salt to a large pot (use same for 4 ppl). Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Wash and dry all produce. Garlic Guide for Step 2 (dbl for 4 ppl): 1/4 tsp mild, 1/2 tsp medium and 1 tsp extra! Add penne to the boiling water. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until tender, 10-12 min. Reserve 3/4 cup pasta water (dbl for 4 ppl), then drain and return penne to the same pot, off heat. Meanwhile, halve tomatoes. Add tomatoes to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Drizzle with half the balsamic glaze. Season with salt and pepper, then toss to coat. Roast in the top of the oven until tomato skins start to blister and tomatoes soften slightly, 8-10 min.
Meanwhile, peel, then cut half the onion into 1/4-inch pieces (whole onion for 4 ppl). Peel, then mince or grate garlic. Strip 2 tsp thyme leaves (dbl for 4 ppl) from stems, then finely chop. Stir together 2 tbsp softened butter, 1/4 tsp thyme (dbl both for 4 ppl) and 1/2 tsp garlic in a small bowl. (NOTE: Reference garlic guide.) Set aside. Add ricotta and 1 tsp thyme (dbl for 4 ppl) to another small bowl. Season with 1/8 tsp salt (dbl for 4 ppl) and pepper, to taste, then stir to combine. Set aside.
Heat a large oven-proof pan over medium heat. (NOTE: If you don't have an oven-proof pan, use a large non-stick pan.) When hot, add 1/2 tbsp oil (dbl for 4 ppl), then onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions soften slightly, 3-4 min. Add remaining garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, 30 sec. Add tomato sauce base. Cook, stirring often, until sauce thickens slightly, 30 sec-1 min. Add penne and reserved pasta water. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, add spinach. Cook, stirring often, until spinach wilts and sauce thickens slightly, 3-4 min.
Remove the pan from heat. Add sun-dried tomato pesto and half the Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, then stir to combine. (NOTE: If you don't have an oven-proof pan, transfer penne mixture to an 8x8-inch baking dish.) Scatter balsamic roasted tomatoes over penne. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan. Spoon small dollops of herb ricotta on top. Bake in the middle of the oven until top is golden, 6-8 min.
Meanwhile, halve ciabatta. Arrange on an unlined baking sheet, cut-side up. Spread garlic-herb butter on ciabatta. Season with salt and pepper. Toast in the top of the oven until lightly golden, 5-7 min. (TIP: Keep an eye on ciabatta so they don't burn!)
Divide penne between plates. Drizzle remaining balsamic glaze over top. Sprinkle with remaining thyme, if desired. Serve garlic bread alongside.