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Healthy Baked Rigatoni with Bechamel Sauce

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Author: Olive
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Ingredients (click ingredient to buy it)

  • SERVES 4-5
  • 2 1/2 CUPS HIGH FIBER RIGATONI OR PENNE, ZITI
  • 2 TABLESPOON EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
  • 2 TABLESPOON WHOLEWHEAT FLOUR
  • 2 CUPS LOW-FAT MILK
  • NUTMEG OPTIONAL
  • SEA SALT OR COARSE SALT AND PEPPER TO TAST
  • 1/3 CUP CHEESE I USED PROCESSED CHEDDAR, USE ANY CHEESE YOU LIKE
  • 1/4 CUP GRATED PARMESAN CHEESE NOT REGGIANO, WAY TOO EXPENSIVE FOR EVERYDAY PASTA MEAL, BUT IF YOU HAVE ONE, IT’S BETTER
  • A CAN 180 G OF HOT AND SPICY TUNA; DRAINED

Instructions

  • FIRST, IN A LARGE POT, BRING TO A BOIL 2 QUARTS OF SALTED WATER. ADD THE RIGATONI AND COOK FOR ABOUT 5 MINUTES. SINCE YOU WILL BE COOKING THE PASTA A SECOND TIME IN THE OVEN, YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE THE INSIDE IS STILL HARD. DRAIN IN A COLANDER.
  • WHILE THAT IS COOKING..
  • MAKE THE BECHAMEL SAUCE: HEAT TWO TABLESPOON EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL, ADD IN THE WHOLEWHEAT PASTRY FLOUR. COOK FOR 2 MINUTES.
  • GRADUALLY ADD THE MILK WHILE STIRRING CONTANTLY TO AVOID ANY LUMPS; SEASON. COOK UNTIL IT’S THICK ENOUGH TO COAT THE BACK OF A SPOON. REMOVE FROM HEAT AND ADD A DASH OF NUTMEG,IF USING, 1/2 CUP CHEESE, TUNA AND SEASON WITH SALT AND BLACK PEPPER OR WHITE IF YOU DON’T WANT TO SEE SPECKS OF BLACK ON YOUR PASTA BUT IT WON’T MATTER ANYWAY SINCE IT’S NOT REALLY A WHITE SAUCE ANYMORE BECAUSE OF THE WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR.
  • ADD COOKED PASTA TO THE BECHAMEL SAUCE. USING A WOODEN SPOON, MIX WELL UNTIL ALL THE PASTA IS COATED WITH THE SAUCE. POUR INTO GREASED (LIGHTLY SPRAY WITH CANOLA/ OLIVE OIL COOKING SPRAY) 8×8 BAKING DISH AND SPRINKLE GRATED PARMESAN CHEESE ON TOP.
  • BAKE IN THE OVEN FOR 25 MINUTES OR UNTIL BUBBLING AND THE TOP IS LIGHTLY GOLDEN/BROWNED. COOL FOR 10 MINUTES BEFORE SERVING.
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