It’s a great idea to make your Big Batch Beef ahead and freeze for later. When ready to make this Baked Bolognese Pasta Bake, just take out 2 cups and your ready to go! Recipe developed by Elyse the Butcher
You can make this in advance and refrigerate for up to 1 day to cook later. It will need a little extra cooking time to get it golden and bubbly! Recipe developed by Elyse the Butcher
2½ cups (625 mL) Big Batch Beef (click link or see recipe below)
1 can (796 mL) crushed tomatoes
1 tsp (5 mL) dried oregano
1 tsp (5 mL) hot pepper flakes
1 tsp (5 mL) balsamic vinegar
½ tsp (2 mL) black pepper
Magic Cheese Sauce
1¼ cups (300 mL) chicken broth
1¼ cups (300 mL) shredded Cheddar cheese (5 oz/150 g)
1 tbsp (15 mL) cornstarch
½ cup (125 mL) whipping cream, mascarpone or cream cheese
½ tsp (2 mL) ground black or white pepper (approx)
14 oz (400 g) rigatoni or large pasta shells
¼ cup (60 mL) Cheddar cheese, grated
2 tbsp (30 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
- Beef Bolognese: Combine Big Batch Beef, tomatoes, oregano, hot pepper flakes, vinegar and pepperin a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat; reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes to blend the flavours. Season with salt to taste. Set aside.
- Magic Cheese Sauce: Bring stock to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Combine Cheddar cheese and cornstarch in a bowl, tossing with a fork. Once the stock is bubbling, add the cheese mixture and stir. Reduce heat to low, stir in cream and pepper; cook, stirring, until thickened. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- Pasta Bake: Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water for 2 minutes less than the time it says on the package (it should remain firm). Scoop out a little of the pasta cooking water towards the end of the cooking time. Drain the pasta and return to pot; stir with the reserved pasta water (just enough to moisten the pasta). This starchy water helps season the pasta and makes the sauce stick to the pasta.
- Stir enough of the Bolognese Sauce into the pasta to coat evenly. Spread remaining Bolognese sauce into the bottom of a 13- x 9-inch (3 L) baking or casserole dish. Spread the sauced pasta on top; drizzle the Magic Cheese Sauce over the pasta. Sprinkle the Cheddar and Parmesan evenly over top.
- Bake in preheated 375°F oven for 20 to 25 minutes until bubbling and golden brown on top.
BIG BATCH BEEF RECIPE
Cook 4 lb (2 kg) Extra Lean or Lean Ground Beef in Dutch oven over medium-high heat for 9 to 10 minutes, breaking into small chunks with back of spoon, until browned and completely cooked. Drain, and return to pot. Add 4 EACH minced yellow onions and garlic; simmer for 12 to 15 minutes until vegetables are softened.
Use a portion right away, or to store, spread mixture in a single layer on several foil or parchment paper-lined baking trays; freeze just until meat is firm, about 1 hour.
Loosen beef mixture into chunks; scoop meal-sized portions into freezer bags. Freeze for up to 3 months.