Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaccioli Bake

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

I’m all for stuffing my family with veggies. Especially beautiful ones. And what better time than when veggies are abundant in the stores and wonderfully priced. Hey, we all love a thrifty meal right?

I had an indecisive moment of making baked mostaccioli or veggie gratin one evening.

And so became the birth of this wonderful dish.

This Mostaccioli Dish is unique in a Veggie Gratin kind of way. That’s because it’s a Veggie Gratin married to Cheese Mostaccioli! It’s layers of pasta and vegetables covered in a rich cheese sauce.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

And did I mention this is topped with white cheddar buttery crackers and cheese???

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

And every bite is a delectable one with vitamin packed veggies and calcium rich cheeses. (Shhh, the kids don’t need to know it’s good for them.)

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaccioli Bake

Ingredients:

10 oz dry Mostaccioli pasta
4 carrots, sliced 1/4″
2 zucchini, sliced 1/4″
1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
5 Tb butter
5 Tb flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 2/3 cups lowfat milk
2 cups Colby Jack cheese, shredded, divided
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
1 cup lowfat cottage cheese
2/3 cup cheddar style baked crackers, crushed

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Prepare the pasta according to package directions. When the pasta is done, remove it with a slotted spoon and set aside.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the carrots, zucchini and cauliflower and set aside.

Add the vegetables to the boiling pasta water after the pasta has been removed. Cook 5 minutes and drain well.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

In a separate large pot set over medium heat, melt the butter.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Add the flour and stir to combine to create a thick roux. Cook 2 minutes.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Carefully pour in the milk and add 1 cup of shredded Colby jack and all of the parmesan cheese and seasonings. Stir well and heat through.

Stir in the cooked pasta.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Spray a large casserole dish or 13×9 inch baking pan with cooking spray.

Spread 1/3 of the pasta and cheese mixture over the bottom.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Top with 1/3 of the vegetables.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Then top with 1/3 of the cottage cheese.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Repeat the layers twice more. Top with crushed white cheddar or butter crackers.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Bake covered at 350F until hot and bubbly, about 40-45 minutes.

Carefully remove from the oven and uncover.

Sprinkle with remaining cup of cheese and let rest for 10 minutes.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaciolli Bake (2)

Serve with a crisp green salad if desired and some Twisted Cheesy Breadsticks.

Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaccioli Bake

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 55 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Number of servings: 8

Per Serving 571 calories

Fat 29 g

Carbs 47 g

Protein 31 g

8


Veggie Gratin Cheesy Mostaccioli Bake

Weight Watchers PointsPlus®: 15

*Nutritional value may vary depending upon which ingredients are used.

*PointsPlus® calculated by Famished Fish and in no way endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

Ingredients

  • 10 oz dry Mostaccioli pasta
  • 4 carrots, sliced 1/4″
  • 2 zucchini, sliced 1/4″
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 5 Tb butter
  • 5 Tb flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 4 2/3 cups lowfat milk
  • 2 cups Colby Jack cheese, shredded, divided
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup lowfat cottage cheese
  • 2/3 cup cheddar style baked crackers, crushed

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Prepare the pasta according to package directions. When the pasta is done, remove it with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, prepare the carrots, zucchini and cauliflower and set aside.
  4. Add the vegetables to the boiling pasta water after the pasta has been removed. Cook 5 minutes and drain well.
  5. In a separate large pot set over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour and stir to combine to create a thick roux. Cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Carefully pour in the milk and add 1 cup of shredded Colby, the parmesan cheese and seasonings. Stir well and heat through. Stir in the cooked pasta.
  7. Spray a large casserole dish or 13×9 inch baking pan with cooking spray.
  8. Spread 1/3 of the pasta and cheese mixture over the bottom. Top with 1/3 of the vegetables. Then top with 1/3 of the cottage cheese. Repeat the layers twice more. Top with crushed white cheddar or butter crackers.
  9. Bake covered at 350F until hot and bubbly, about 40-45 minutes.
  10. Carefully remove from the oven and uncover. Sprinkle with remaining cup of cheese and let rest for 10 minutes.

Notes

Serve with a crisp green salad if desired and some breadsticks.

 

My Childhood Comfort – Spaetzle:German Egg Noodles

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Childhood memories of my grandmother’s perfume mixed with the enticing savory smells of German food cooking on the stove and baking in the oven fill my head. Dinner at Oma’s was the best. She always had piles of rouladen, a big bowl of goulash, soft buttery mashed potatoes, sweet honey glazed carrots, broccoli and cauliflower casserole and hot dinner rolls. And mildly sweet flaky cheese and cabbage strudels that I plan to share with you one day as well.

Spaetzle - German Egg Noodles | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

But one of my favorite childhood dishes was her rich and buttery spaetzle, fresh boiled egg noodle dumplings tossed with fresh butter. The spaetzle made a great base for rich goulash and the gravy from the rouladen.

Spaetzle - German Egg Noodles | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

Or shown here with my Quick Marinated Top Sirloin Steak. Just look at those rich egg noodles-so delicious, they melt in your mouth! And my family loves these noodles, especially my most finicky one!

Spaetzle - German Egg Noodles | Famished Fish, Finicky Shark

What I LOVE about these noodles is they can be done from start to finish in only 25 minutes. And the process of making these delicious dumplings is quite simple. I use my spaetzle press to make these, but a spoon and a colander work great too, as I’ve used in my earlier days.

So gather your ingredients to make these noodles and serve them anyway you like….

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