Baked Penne With Ground Beef and Tomato Sauce
photo by Sassy J
- Ready In:
- 2hrs 25mins
- 1 lb ground beef
- 4 cups cooked penne (about 3 cups uncooked)
- 2 1⁄2 cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
- 1⁄2 cup grated parmesan cheese (or to taste)
- 3 -4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion
- 1 small green bell pepper
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 -4 teaspoon dried chili pepper flakes (optional)
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
- 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
- 1⁄2 cup dry red wine
- 2 (28 ounce) cans plum tomatoes (undrained and chopped)
- 1 (14 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 large bay leaf
- salt and black pepper
- For the sauce; heat oil in a large pot over medium high heat; add in onion, bell pepper, oregano, basil and chili flakes (if using) sauté for about 5 minutes (adding in the garlic the last 2 minutes of cooking).
- Add in the tomato paste and stir for about 1 minute.
- Add in all remaining ingredients; bring to a boil and simmer (UNCOVERED) on low heat for about 1-1/2 hours.
- Season with salt and pepper then remove the bay leaf.
- At this point you can cool then refrigerate for up to 2 days.
- Set oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease a medium casserole dish (or a 13 x 9-inch baking dish).
- In a large skillet cook the ground beef until well browned, breaking up with a spoon until crumbled; drain fat.
- To the skillet add in about 5 cups prepared tomato sauce (more is okay, or just go ahead and use the whole amount of sauce if desired more sauce will never hurt lol!) cook for about 15-20 minutes on medium-low heat.
- Remove from heat and add in 1-1/2 cups mozzarella cheese; stir with wooden spoon to combine.
- Add in the cooked penne pasta; toss to combine with sauce and cheese.
- Transfer to baking dish.
- Bake for about 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese then about 1/2 cup (or more) mozzarella cheese, return to oven and cook 5-8 minutes more or until the cheese is melted.
The taste is very good, but the instructions of the recipe are not very clear, or user-friendly... And I think there is a error and that you should skip the step 15. Overall I think that we can simplify a little bit this recipe by cooking the groundbeef with the onions at first, and letting the beef simmer with the sauce. That's what I did and it was very good. I cook the sauce in a large casserole that goes as well in the oven so all I had to do when the sauce was ready is too add the penne and the cheese, and I did sprinkle the additionnal mozzarella & parmesan at this step and only cook for about 15 min. in the oven. It's simplier and less longer to prepare. Hope I did not hurt you with my suggestions... :)))))
Kittencal this was absolutely Yummo, Delicious. Who would want to use a jar sauce when this tomato sauce tastes fantastic and easy to make. It has such a wonderful flavor, I couldn't stop sampling it while cooking. The only thing I changed was to put in red bell peppers and not the green ones. Personal taste. Everything else was done as to the recipe. I put in about 2 tsp. pepper flakes, and it added the right amount of bite. I should of actually cut the recipe in half though, cause there is loads of leftovers. I seem to forget that there is only the 2 of us. But that just means there is great leftovers for lunches. I separated them into 4 separate containers for 2 people each. Thanks for this wonderful recipe Kittencal.