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Fusilli Casserole with Cauliflower

5 from 9 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Total Time 1 hr 20 mins
Course Dinner
Cuisine European
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
 

For the pasta:

  • 100 g Fusilli, twisted ribbon pasta
  • 300 g Water
  • 6 g Chicken broth, Kraft bouillon
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil, (for greasing the mold)
  • 200 g Mozzarella, matured, coarsely grated, refrigerated shelf

For the sauce:

  • 6 small Onions, red
  • 2 medium-sized Cloves of garlic, fresh
  • 7 medium-sized Tomatoes, red, fully ripe
  • 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp Tomato paste
  • 50 g Tomato juice
  • 2 tbsp Herbal mix, Italy, frozen or dried
  • 2 g Chicken broth, Kraft bouillon
  • 1 tsp Black pepper, fresh from the mill
  • 100 g Pasta water, (see preparation)
  • 60 g Parmesan, finely grated

The vegetable:

  • 60 g Broccoli stems, TK
  • 60 g Carrot
  • 3 tbsp Celery stalks, TK
  • 80 g Cauliflower florets

To garnish:

  • 11 Grapes, black, seedless
  • 2 Frisée lettuce leaves
  • 2 tbsp Almond sticks, white

Instructions
 

The mozzarella:

  • Coarsely grate the mozzarella if you could only buy it in one piece. Have refrigerated shelf goods or even shredded goods ready.
  • For the sauce, cap the onions and the garlic cloves at both ends, peel them and cut into small pieces. Wash the tomatoes, remove the stems, peel them, quarter them lengthways, remove the green stem and the grains. Roughly chop the quarters of 3 of the tomatoes and keep them ready separately.
  • Mix the ingredients for the sauce from tomato paste to pepper homogeneously and keep them ready.
  • Bring the water for the pasta to a boil. Dissolve the chicken stock in it. Add the fusilli and cook al dente according to the instructions on the packet (do not let them get too soft, as they are still being baked, approx. 6 minutes). Strain, keep the pasta water and spread the fusilli on a fresh tea towel.
  • Wash the carrot, cap both ends and peel. Make notches lengthways in the upper half and plane across into approx. 3 mm thick slices. Slice or slice the rest of the carrot into sticks. Blanch the carrot slices and sticks in the pasta water for 3 minutes. Lift this out with a slotted spoon. Have the pegs for the vegetables and the slices ready separately for garnishing.
  • From the edge of the washed cauliflower, cut off the required number of small florets with a stalk of approx. 1 cm. Rinse the florets well and blanch them in boiling pasta water for 3 minutes and use the broth for the sauce. Measure these and stir into the prepared sauce. Keep the rest of the broth ready until the end.
  • For the sauce, heat the olive oil in a pan, add onions and garlic and roast until the onions are translucent. Add the chopped tomatoes and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Deglaze with the sauce and stir in the Parmesan cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the remaining tomato quarters and let the sauce simmer for 3 minutes with the lid on.
  • The sauce should be thin, if necessary dilute with some of the remaining noodle broth. Fish out the tomato quarters and keep them ready for topping.
  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees bottom heat.
  • Grease a medium-sized casserole dish with olive oil and cover the bottom with a third of the sauce. Place half of the pasta on top and cover with the vegetables. Sprinkle with half of the mozzarella and drizzle with a third of the sauce. Use all the cauliflower florets as the next layer and cover with the remaining fusilli.
  • Pour the rest of the sauce over the fusilli and place the tomato quarters on top. Sprinkle with the rest of the mozzarella and garnish with the carrot slices.
  • Put in the oven on medium heat and finish baking in 40 minutes. Let cool down a bit and garnish with grapes, almond sticks and frisée leaves and serve warm as a side dish and enjoy.
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Written by John Myers

Professional Chef with 25 years of industry experience at the highest levels. Restaurant owner. Beverage Director with experience creating world-class nationally recognized cocktail programs. Food writer with a distinctive Chef-driven voice and point of view.

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