• December 9, 2009 - 12:10 PM


Serves 6.

Note: Provola is a stringy cheese like mozzarella. From "Cooking From Above Italian," by Laura Zavan.

• 1 lb. ziti (tube-shaped pasta)

• 8 oz. mozzarella

• 5 oz. smoked Provola or smoked mozzarella

• 31/2 oz. Parmesan

• 21/2 c. tomato sauce

• Handful of basil, divided

• 11/2 tbsp. butter, plus more to butter dish

• 4 to 6 tbsp. bread crumbs

• 1 c. ricotta

• Salt and freshly ground pepper


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil, then cook the pasta until tender. Drain.

Cut the mozzarella and Provola into small pieces and shred the Parmesan.

Mix the cooked pasta with tomato sauce, half the Parmesan and some basil leaves.

Butter a gratin dish, sprinkle the base with bread crumbs, pour in half the pasta mixture and cover with half the mozzarella, Provola, and crumbled ricotta. Top with remaining basil then repeat the pasta and cheese layers.

Sprinkle with bread crumbs and the remaining Parmesan and dot with butter. Season with salt and pepper.

Bake in oven for about 20 minutes until the top is crisp and golden brown.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 715 Fat 27 g Sodium 1,610 mg

Carbohydrates 78 g Saturated fat 16 g Calcium 805 mg

Protein 41 g Cholesterol 68 mg Dietary fiber 6 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 5 bread/starch, 4 medium-fat meat, 11/2 fat.

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