Greek Pasta Bake (created by me)
Not too long ago, we had a Greek-themed pizza topped with roasted red pepper, spinach, feta, onion, and tomato complete with Greek seasoning sprinkled on top. The seasoning was amazing and I couldn’t wait to go buy some at the store. Unfortunately, our grocery store doesn’t carry as many varieties as I would have liked to see, but I did find one that seemed pretty authentic.
I was initially inspired to use my zucchini and yellow squash because I had several of each that needed to be eaten before they turned. I chopped them up and sautéed them with onion and garlic and seasoned it all with none other than the Greek seasoning. I put some bowtie pasta on to boil while the squash and onions were sautéeing. When all had softened nicely, I put it on another plate and browned some ground turkey in the same pan, also seasoning this layer with the Greek spices. If you don’t season every layer of a dish, the end result will be underseasoned. Next up came a can of unsalted diced tomatoes. I mixed in the squash mixture and let the flavors all simmer together, so they would meld together and be perfectly balanced.
I folded in some fresh spinach at the end, so it would wilt, but retain its shape and freshness. I also added a generous handful of feta. This was all poured into a baking dish where I topped it off with some grated mozzarella. I covered it with foil and let it bake for 20 min. or so at 350°. The finished casserole was so good – perfectly al dente pasta flavored by the turkey, tomatoes, onions, and squash which were all peppered with the Greek spice blend and held together by the blanket of mozzarella on top. The feta melted while baking and helped bind all the ingredients together. The beauty of this dish is that you can add any number of vegetables, or change the seasoning, even omit the meat to make it completely your own. Experiment with your dinner tonight, you might just be surprised at what you can create! You have my permission to play with your food. 😉