Baked ziti is hearty, satisfying, and easy to prepare. To streamline the recipe, we skipped the traditional step of browning the meat before it's combined with the rest of the ingredients; it cooks fully as the casserole bakes. This recipe easily doubles to feed a crowd; bake in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish for 35 minutes.
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided
1/4 cup (1 ounce) shredded Asiago cheese, divided
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
6 ounces ground turkey breast
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°.
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain.
Combine pasta, Basic Marinara, 1/2 cup mozzarella, 2 tablespoons Asiago, salt, pepper sauce, and turkey in a large bowl. Spoon into an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray; sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella and remaining 2 tablespoons Asiago. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Wine note: A simple baked ziti such as this is best with a good solid red wine, preferably made from the Italian grape sangiovese (the main grape in Chianti). Sangiovese possesses a hint of acidity, which helps it pair beautifully with tomato sauces. For a fuller-bodied sangiovese, try one from California such as Eberle Sangiovese 2005 from Paso Robles ($22). --Karen MacNeil