Welcome to my world of experimenting with sweet potatoes. Stews, ravioli, latkes, casseroles, cassoulets…why not baked ziti?
The sweet potatoes added a nice bright flavor to the ricotta cheese. I could have eaten the cheese mixture by itself – really, taste it when you mix the sweet potatoes and cheese, you’ll see what I mean.
Adding the sweet potatoes means more sauce is needed. I thought I had compensated enough, but more sauce was needed. We solved this by heating and passing additional sauce, but next time I may add more sauce to the ziti itself. I have noted both approaches in the recipe.
Since I was mashing the sweet potato, this was a good recipe to use some of the “ugly” odd sized sweet potatoes.
I have been a bit obsessed with sweet potato dishes this week. I think I need to force myself to make other foods before we all turn orange.
Sweet Potato Baked Ziti
1 lb sweet potato (from the garden)
2 cloves garlic, minced (from the garden)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
15-oz container of part-skim ricotta cheese
1 lb ziti
2 24-oz jars of marinara or other sauce (or home-made)
4 – 6 oz mozzarella, grated.
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook the ziti according to package directions. Drain, but do not rinse.
Meanwhile, prick the sweet potatoes all over with a fork. Place on a microwave safe dish and cook in the microwave for 10 minutes or until soft (cooking time will vary depending upon the size of your sweet potatoes). Let cool, then scrape out the insides of the potatoes into a mixing bowl. Mash with garlic and salt and pepper to taste.
Mix in the ricotta. (Taste this mixture, it is yummy)
In a large flat casserole (or 9×13 pan), mix the warm pasta with the cheese/sweet potato mixture.
Stir in 1 or 2 jars of sauce. Top with the grated mozzarella.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 10 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.
Serve. If you only used 1 jar of sauce, heat the remaining jar and pass it for adding at the table. Enjoy!