If you happen to have some meatballs and sugo leftover, here’s a simple baked dish that will put them to good use. Just toss them with cooked cavatappi—spiral pastas that do look like corkscrews—and cheeses, then bake.
You can also bake this in a mold and turn it out, as lovely golden torta. Press the filling to fit into a 10-cup bundt pan or soufflé dish, generously buttered and coated with bread crumbs. Sprinkle bread crumbs and grated cheese on the top (which will become the bottom) and bake at 400 degrees until the edges are golden.
- 1 pound cavatappi
- 2 cups Sugo
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 6 to 8 turkey or sausage meatballs sliced in 1/4-inch rounds
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano
- 2 cups shredded low-moisture mozzarella or Muenster
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Cook cavatappi in a large pot of boiling, salted water until slightly underdone, 8 to 9 minutes (always a bit less than package directions). While the pasta is cooking, pour the sugo in the skillet and heat it slowly. Butter the bottom and sides of the baking dish with 2 tablespoons of the butter.
Drain the cooked cavatappi in a colander, shake off excess water, and dump it into the pan. Toss pasta and sauce briefly until coated, then fold in the meatball slices for a minute or so to heat them.
Turn off the heat, sprinkle on 2/3 cup of the grated cheese and 1 cup of the shredded cheese and fold in. Drop the remaining butter in bits on the pasta, fold in quickly and turn everything into the baking dish.
Spread the pasta level in the dish, sprinkle the remaining shredded cheese all over and then the remaining grated cheese.
Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until the top is crusty and nicely colored.