Cheesy Marinara Baked Penne

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Sometimes, on a crazy, insane, and slightly overwhelming start to the week kinda Monday, all you need is a little comfort food hug in your life. This, my friends, this is that hug. K, I’m out. Short, sweet, and to the comforting point.

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Baked Comfort Food Heaven.

Cheesy Marinara Baked Penne
Serves 4-6 hungry people

You’ll need;

For the sauce:
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
8 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon fresh basil, diced
For the pasta:
500 grams penne
2 cups mozzarella, grated
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 cup fresh basil, diced
Preheated your oven to 350 degrees.

Heat a saucepan over medium-heat, and pour in 1/4 cup olive oil. When the oil is hot (but not smoking), add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Pour in the crushed tomatoes, and season with 1/2 teaspoon oregano and 1 teaspoon sea salt. Let the sauce simmer and bubble away for 8 – 10 minutes, until reduced and slightly thickened. Stir in 1/4 cup finely diced basil and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook pasta according to package directions. Drain.

Toss the pasta and the sauce together in a bowl and transfer to a cast-iron (or oven safe) pan.  Top with grated mozzarella and Parmesan, and sprinkle over 1/2 teaspoon of oregano. Drizzle over 1 tablespoon olive oil, and transferred to the preheated oven.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the tops of the pasta just start to crisp.

Serve immediately.

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