Pasta with Roasted Cauiflower

Pasta with Roasted Cauliflower (adapted from Alton Brown)

1 large head of cauliflower, broken into bite-size pieces (4 green containers)
1.25 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 (14-ounce) can whole tomatoes, drained (2 green containers)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (more or less depending on your heat tolerance)
1/2 lb. whole grain penne or rigatoni pasta (about 5 yellow containers)
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, plus extra for topping (1 blue container)
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese (34 blue containers)
2 tablespoons chopped parsley


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and give it least 20 minutes to get good and hot.

Toss the cauliflower with oil and 1 teaspoon salt in a 10″ cast iron skillet and roast in the oven for 30 minutes, carefully stirring halfway through.

Remove skillet from oven and place over medium heat. Add the tomatoes, garlic and red pepper flakes and occasionally, breaking up the tomatoes as they soften. Cook until most of the tomato liquid has cooked out–about 5 minutes—and remove from heat.

Drop the uncooked pasta into a large saucepan and fill with enough cold water to cover the noodles by 1 inch. Stir in remaining salt and place over high heat. When the water comes to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and stir once a minute for 5 minutes or until the pasta is al dente.

Use a spider or slotted spoon to transfer the cooked pasta into the skillet with the cauliflower mixture followed by a quarter cup of the pasta water. Stir in Parmesan and cheddar cheeses, and top with bread crumbs.

Return the skillet to the oven and cook another 15 to 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the bread crumbs are golden brown. Remove and sprinkle with chopped parsley and additional Parmesan.

Cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Baked Penne

Baked Penne (Adapted from Ellie Krieger)

Four Cheese Baked Penne: Serves 6-8

1 pound whole-wheat penne (about 10 yellow containers)
1 1/2 cups small-curd low-fat cottage cheese (2 red)
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese (1.5 red)
1 1/4 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided (5 blue, includes topping)
Cooking spray
1/4 cup grated Parmesan (3/4 blue)
Spaghetti sauce recipe (2.5 purple)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Combine the cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup mozzarella and stir with a fork to incorporate and set aside. Cook pasta until tender but still firm, a minute or 2 less than the package directs. Drain. Add Tomato sauce recipe and pasta to the cheese mixture and stir until well incorporated.

Spray a 9 by 13-inch glass baking dish with cooking spray then transfer pasta mixture to pan. Top with remaining 3/4 cup mozzarella and the parmesan (you don’t have to top it with this much cheese if you don’t want to). Bake until heated through and cheese is melted, 30 minutes.