nutrition facts for 8 servings
What to assemble:
27 oz packages tortellini (I used three 9 oz spinach tortellini packs)
2 large leeks (or 3 medium)
2 T olive oil
6 cloves garlic
1/4 t black pepper or to taste
1/4 t crushed red pepper flakes
45 oz canned or boxed chopped tomatoes (or fresh if it is tomato season)
1/4 cup red wine
2 T tomato paste
1 large handful fresh picked basil leaves
1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano
4 oz fresh Mozzarella
Add 1 cup peas to the boiling water with the toretllini
Add sliced mushrooms or spinach when sauteing the leek
1/4 cup cream mixed into the sauce before baking
How to prep:
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Clean and slice the leeks. The white and light green parts are to be used in the dish and the rest added to your compost bin. Rinse the root end of the leek to remove the external dirt. Slice the roots off the bulb, then cut off the dark green woody leaves. I like to remove the outer layer as I would an onion. This is easy to do if you make a thin slit in the layer. It then peels right off. Slice the leeks into thin ringlets. Add to a large bowl of cool water and separate the rings. Swish a bit, drain into a fine mesh colander. Return to the bowl with more cool water and rinse again. Repeat until all the dirt is removed. Drain well, lay in a tea towel and pat dry. Return to the dried bowl.
Set out the tortellini, measure the oil, mince the garlic, and open the container of tomatoes. Rinse and tear the basil leaves. They don't have to be small, just 2 or three pieces for each leaf. Dry in the tea towel and place in a bowl.
Measure the black and red pepper into a small bowl. Measure wine and set out tomato paste. Grate the Parmigiano-Reggiano, and make thin slices off the block of mozzarella.
|Do not over cheese, this is just right.|
Taste and adjust seasonings to your preference. I've given you starter amounts. You may love more garlic. If so - add it! You might like it with a more peppery kick - add more crushed red pepper flakes! I do not salt. But if you need it, go ahead... just not too much, ok?
Once the sauce is simmering, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the tortellini and boil for just two minutes. Drain in a colander and set aside.
Add the Parmigiano-Reggiano to the finished sauce and stir. Drain the tortellini and return them to the pasta pot. Mix the sauce with the tortellini Pour into the baking pan and spread smooth. Dot with circles of mozzarella.
Tightly cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil, raise the temperature to 425 F and bake uncovered for 10-15 minutes - or until the cheese begins to brown a bit.
Remove from the oven and allow to set five minutes before serving.
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