Anna’s Pasta Forno

14 03 2006

Hot on the heels of Anna’s Pasta Sauce comes . . . Anna’s Pasta Forno.

Yes, it’s time for yours sincerely to indulge in a little spot of nostalgia and blatant ethnic stereotyping. Well–I am part-Calabrese, so it’s my birthright, dammit! Anyway, some of my fondest epicurean memories involve Christmas and Easter celebrations at Nonno and Nonna’s house. These would manifest themselves in two varieties. The first I like to think of as “entree surprise”–the surprise being that the full plate of gnocchi you just devoured, and which you can feel expanding in your gullet in a fashion not dissimilar to Aunt Marge in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, was only the first course. The second (my favourite) was usually a bring-a-plate affair, and saw my grandparent’s humble dining table transform before our very eyes into a smorgasbord that would give Homer Simpson a run for his money. And one of the most popular stops along the way–along with the mountains of cottolette (that’s crumbed veal to you–but so much more than crumbed veal) my mother generally supplied–was Anna’s Pasta Forno.

And it’s incredibly easy to make.

Bolognese sauce
500g beef mince, browned
Anna’s Pasta Sauce (minus the pork ribs or sausages, and of course the meatballs)

Bring to the boil and then simmer for . . . well, you’re supposed to simmer for about an hour, but 25 minutes should suffice. Simmer until you think the sauce has thickened enough–you have to trust your own judgment with these home-spun recipes.

The Pasta Forno
500g rigatoni or penne, cooked
500g Mozzarella cheese, grated
1 tin SPAM (yes you read that correctly) or equivalent quantity of leg ham, chopped
6 hard-boiled eggs
The aforementioned Bolognese sauce

Spread a small quantity of sauce over the base of a lasagne dish. Layer pasta with remaining sauce, ham, egg and cheese. Finish with a layer of cheese. Bake at 180C for about half-an-hour, or until golden. Boo-ya.

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2 responses

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4 08 2011
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