Baked Spicy Cheese Pasta

14 Aug

Baked Whole Wheat Penne in Spicy Cheese Sauce

  • 1 package of pasta (e.g. penne, elbow, fusilli)
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • half an onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp of butter
  • 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of flour
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1 cup of plain yogurt
  • 2.5 cups of old cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 1/3 cup of parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 1 tsp of nutmeg
  • 1 tsp of paprika
  • 1 tsp of chili pepper flakes (more if you like it rather spicy)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook the pasta as directed on the package but minimize the cooking time so that the pasta is slightly underdone.  The pasta will finish cooking in the oven.

Heat a large pot on high and once the pot becomes hot, add in the butter, oil and onions.  Cook until the onions are soft (about 5 minutes) and then add in the garlic and spices.  Once the garlic is cooked (about 1 minute), sprinkle the flour thinly and evenly over the onions and garlic.  Immediately add in the milk and cheeses.  When the cheeses begin to melt and bubble, turn down to a medium heat and add in the yogurt. Simmer until the sauce is smooth and velvety.  Add in the pasta.  Mix well.

Pour the cheesy pasta into a baking dish.  Add a light dusting of parmesan cheese over the top of the pasta. Place the baking dish into a preheated 400°C oven for 25 to 30 mins or until the top is a golden brown.  Cool for 5 minutes before serving. This dish provides four generous sides or two dinner portions.

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