Vegetable Not-Zagna Pasta Toss

by Erica Deb February. 02, 2012 3190 views

For my first recipe I chose something relatively easy that seemed similar to the types of food I usually cook. I didn't want to jump straight into the deep end, so a pasta dish with vegetables was a good place to start. I planned ahead by writing down the ingredients I needed on my grocery list. Sadly, it turns out I have no capacity for reading while simultaneously talking to my husband and watching my 9-month-old daughter. As a result I forgot the majority of the ingredients. Not that I noticed until my pasta water was starting to boil.

The recipe, which I snipped from Rachael Ray's magazine, called for pasta, zucchini, carrots, EVOO (don't even get my started on the pointlessness of extra virgin olive oil or this ridiculous abbreviation), sliced mushrooms, garlic, frozen peas, onions, jarred roasted red peppers, and a slew of other stuff. Of that list, I forgot the mushrooms, peppers, and my husband failed to tell me that we were out of onions. So I threw in a can of green beans, as well as a can of mushrooms. I usually hate those, but honestly, in this, they weren't bad. At the last minute I also threw in a can of diced tomatoes.

While cooking this not-zagna, I made my very first roux. No problem there, though the recipe told me to “eyeball” the nutmeg, causing me to add too little and then too much. I guess I am a measurement gal. Good thing I like nutmeg.

The final step was to stir in an entire container of ricotta cheese (I opted for fat free since I am on Weight Watchers and need to keep my points in check!) and 1 cup (I ignored the handful nonsense that it actually called for) of Parmesan.

All in all, it was ok. It was supposed to be an easier way of making a pasta dish that closely resembles vegetable lasagna, but it was missing one key ingredient. Mozzarella. To correct this error, the following day when I made leftovers, I filled up a ramekin, topped it with some mozzarella and threw it under the broiler. Greatly improved the recipe.

This recipe was hit and miss. I don't think it is going to end up in my recipe box since I much prefer the pasta dishes I was making on my own.

Recipe thanks to Rachael Ray.

Finished product.

Day 2 with melted mozzarella.

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