Tonight is a celebration. As of today, both of us are now employed in low-paying, highly competitive advertising internships, and that is an excuse to eat some FAT FOODS with cheese and cream and carbs. Also al forno = ‘in the oven’, for any plebs currently reading.
So why is this pasta SO AWESOME?
a) it has a pound of meat in it. IRON.
b) it uses Mid’s pasta sauce, which is the only acceptable (yes we think Ragu is gross and if you use it you might be gross too) jarred sauce for under $6.
c) it has heavy cream AND full fat mozzarella, the kind made with cream cheese.
How the hell do you make something like this and not die of a heart attack? Answer: just don’t be old. Make it while your body can take it. You can always buy an illegal prescription for Lipitor from India off the internet if you’re feeling self-loathing.
Rigatoni al Forno (an ‘original’ recipe, not stolen from the internet or Mark Bittman or Marcella Hazan like everything else we cook)
1 jar Mid’s Meatless pasta sauce
1 lb ground sirloin (the only low-fat part of this recipe)
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 package Kraft mozzarella with the Philly cream cheese logo
1 box rigatoni, which can not be substituted, because rigatoni is superior
Preheat the oven to the broil setting. If you are too poor to have a broil setting then do 450 or something else really high. Boil some salty water in a big pot and brown the ground beef in a bigger pan than you think you need. Do not brown any garlic cloves in there no matter how fancy you think you are, because we have tried this, and it is disgusting. Add the Mid’s sauce and set to very low heat, stirring pretty often.
As the pasta finishes, add the heavy cream and stir so that the sauce turns light and orangey (don’t add it too early or it will curdle when mixed with the sauce acid, which is nasty). When the pasta is just under al dente (almost edible, not crunchy, but not totally ready) drain it and add to the sauce/meat mix. Stir and throw in a few handfuls of the mozzarella. Dump all the pasta into a cast iron skillet and put the rest of the mozzarella on there. Do you feel fat yet?
Broil for 5-10 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and looks like pizza cheese. Serve it out of the skillet (keeps it hot), then rub it in to everyone around you how much better your dinner is than theirs.