When the moon hits your eye like a big “PASTA PIE” That’s amore!

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I know it is supposed to be Pizza Pie, but we were having Pasta Pie! I had the song blaring from the computer when we sat down to eat…I don’t think my family appreciated my singing or the song 😦 BUT, they did love my big Pasta Pie 🙂

I did not think this recipe was going to turn out tonight…but it was a false alarm. It turned out great. I believe this recipe originally came Martha Stewart. I found it on Pinterest, which lead me to Noble Pig website. I added a few ingredients.

  • 1 pound rigatoni
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound ground beef 
  • 2 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper ( I don’t understand why they said 1/4 tsp…because directions said 1 tsp of salt and pepper and that is what I did)
  • 1 can (28 ounces) good quality crushed tomatoes
  • Butter, for pan
  • Salt
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces coarsely grated mozzarella ( I used a packaged of a  combination of Italian cheeses)
  • I added a pinch of red pepper flakes, tsp of dried oregano and basil. I also added about 2 T of fresh basil…because I have it in my herb garden.

In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta until slightly underdone (I cooked mine for 1 or 2 minutes less than what the package stated).  One pound of pasta should be cooked in 6 quarts of water, make sure you are using a big enough pot so the pasta doesn’t stick together.  When done, rinse in cold water and drain again.  Toss pasta with 1 Tablespoon olive oil to coat.  Set aside.

Heat remaining 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add ground beef.  Cook, stirring occasionally until browned.  Add garlic, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper (and  red pepper flakes, dried oregano and dried basil) Cook 2 minutes more.

Add crushed tomatoes; simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes. Stir in fresh basil (if you have it)

Toss pasta with Parmesan cheese.  Butter a 9-inch springform pan.  Tightly pack pasta into pan, standing each piece on end.  Spread meat sauce on top of pasta.

This was the tricky part! Push the meat sauce into the pasta holes filling each one up.  (I think my rigatoni had small holes…that is where I began to panic and I felt like I did not have enough pasta….Mark thought of a great idea to help me with that. You will see it in the photos)

Place in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Sprinkle mozzarella ( or Italian Blend) cheese on top and bake another 10-15 minutes until cheese is golden.  Remove from oven and let stand for 15 minutes.  Run a knife around the edge to loosen, unfasten and remove ring.

Cut into wedges and serve.

Ingredient Line Up.

Boil pasta in salted water.

Brown beef in 1 T olive oil.

LOVE! Local Beef!

After meat is brown. Add garlic and sautéed it for a minute.

Add seasonings and sautéed for another minute. Then add crushed tomatoes (I forgot to take a photo of that)

Toss drained and rinsed pasta with olive oil.

Toss with parmesan cheese.

HERE IS THE TRICKY PART! In a buttered 9″ springform pan stack the noodle standing on their ends. I did not have enough pasta, nor do I think my rigatoni was as big as the rigatoni the Noble Pig used. You need to check out their photo on the website.  Do they have different sizes of rigatoni? I started panicking because I thought I needed more and how in the world was I going to get that meat sauce in those holes!

Mark came up with the brilliant idea to put a tomato in the center. I could have used a bigger tomato, but it worked. He ate the tomato and said it was awesome. He said I should have added a few more tomatoes. I think that is a great idea! He didn't share! Make sure and put pan on a cookie sheet. Mine leaked a little.

Now comes the problem of getting the sauce in the holes. I just tried to push it down between the noodles instead of inside the noodles. Amazingly, I think some of it did get inside the holes.

There was so much still left on top. I thought there would hardly be anything inside or between the noodles. So I said a prayer and popped it in the oven.

Baked it for 15 minutes. Removed it from the oven.

Added cheese to the top. Said a prayer. Baked additional 10 minutes. Removed it from the oven and let it sit for 15 minutes. Run knife around edges. Unfasten and remove sides.

Drum roll please….

Pasta Pie! That's Amore!

It was very good!

I  realized after the girls stuffed the leftovers  into a container… that I failed to take a photo of my perfect slice of Pizza Pie on my plate. I even wiped off a drip on the plate. I had it looking good. That’s Amore was playing. I was trying to sing. I couldn’t wait to taste it… we all prayed and dug in. You will just have to take my word, it was pretty and yummy!

~Relish Food & Life

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One response »

  1. Looks great. And yes I have seen different sizes of rigatoni, including some that would make getting the meat inside way easier. Reminds me of my bechamel tiny meatball pie recipe I gave you. (You make about 200 meatballs from a pound of pork.) Lot of work, but really pretty when it is done.

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