The great thing about Pasta Bake is that once you’ve got the basic recipe you can easily adapt it to fit in with the ingredients you happen to have in your pantry and fridge.
Pasta Bake is very simple to make and will take around 10 minutes to prepare and around 20 minutes to cook in the oven.
This recipe uses smoked trout, but tinned tuna and tinned salmon also work well.
This recipe serves around four people.
Pasta Bake – Ingredients
- Pasta (fresh or dried) – enough for 4 people
- 1 or 2 fillets of smoked boneless trout – or one or two tins of tuna or salmon (drained)
- Corn kernels from 2 fresh cobs – or frozen
- Couple of handfuls of frozen peas (fresh take a lot of time to pod!)
- 1 or 2 capsicum, chopped small – any colour (red looks particularly nice in this dish)
- 2 or 3 teaspoons of capers
- 250 ml cream (you can use milk or soy if you’re watching the calories)
- 2 or 3 handfuls of bread crumbs
- Handful of Parmesan cheese
- Lemon wedges and grated black pepper to serve
Pasta Bake – Method
- Cook the pasta in boiling water
- While pasta in cooking, roughly chop the trout and put in a bowl with the corn, peas, capsicum and capers – mix
- In a separate bowl mix the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese together
- When the pasta is cooked drain and cool slightly with cold water – drain again
- Put the pasta in a large oven proof dish and mix in the veggies
- Pour the cream evenly over the top of the pasta bake
- Next sprinkle the bread crumb mix on top (don’t worry if it doesn’t cover every single piece of pasta)
- Bake in a moderate over for around 20 minutes – it’s ready when the breadcrumbs are golden brown on top
- Serve at the table with lemon wedges and grated black pepper
- Like I said earlier, salmon or tuna pasta bake work very well
- You can leave out the breadcrumb topping if you like, just sprinkle the pasta with some Parmesan cheese before cooking
- You can try other veggies. Depending upon which veggies you use, you may have to pre-cook them slightly – for example, broccoli and carrots
- Frozen string beans work well – and don’t need pre-cooking
- In the photo I added minimal veggies (peas and capers) and it still looked and tasted great
- Three coloured spiral pasta looks fabulous in this dish
- Cooling the pasta immediately after cooking makes it easier to mix in the veggies and stops the pasta going ‘sticky’
- Pasta bake is perfect for using up yesterday’s left-over pasta from the fridge
- The breadcrumb topping takes a couple of extra minutes to prepare but is worth the effort – it makes the pasta bake crispy on top and adds texture
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