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  • Writer's pictureSusie Csorsz Brown

Spaghetti Pie

It's Tuesday night. You just got home from work. Your three hungry kids will be home in 45 minutes from their sports practice. You forgot to plan ahead to make something for dinner. So .. what's the plan? Here's an idea: you have pasta, you have eggs, you have milk. Probably you have some sort of veggies. Put on a pot of water to boil, and get to it. By the time the pasta is boiled, you'll have the cheese grated. Mix it all together, stick it in the oven, and while it bakes, you can toss together a salad. Dinner done, and you have time to sit with the kids for a few while they tell you about their day.


Couple notes: Use what cheese you love. Half the cheese should be melty like fontina or soft gouda. The other half should be strong flavored like pecorino, manchego or even parmesan.



You can definitely make this without the broccoli or with a different favorite veg. Just adjust the par-boiling time to suit, and make sure the pieces are small.


Spaghetti Pie


Yield: 6 - 8 servings (unless they are hungry boys and then 3 - 4)


Ingredients


Olive oil for greasing springform

1/2 pound broccoli, chopped into small bits

6 ounces cremini or shiitake mushrooms, chopped

1 pound dried spaghetti

1 1/2 cups milk

3 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 to 3 teaspoons ground black pepper

2 teaspoons coarse or kosher salt

8 ounces aged cheese, finely grated, divided

8 ounces melty cheese, grated, divided


Directions


Heat oven to 425 degrees. Oil the inside a 9-inch springform pan and this is very important, wrap the outside of the springform, focusing on the places where the ring meets the base, tightly in aluminum foil. Note: if you don't make it drip-proof, this sauce may leak out and make a big mess. A good way to get a tight foil wrap is to take two lengths of foil, and crip the edges together lengthwise, folding them over and over together in a thin fold. Place the cake pan in the middle of the crimp and bring the edges up and press them to fit the cake pan. Make sure it is tight. Set aside.


Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Add the broccoli to the pot and boil for 1 to 2 minutes, until it has some give. Fish it out with a large slotted spoon and drain it well. Add the mushrooms to the broccoli. Set aside.


Add spaghetti to boiling water (don't worry about the bits of broccoli floating around) and cook until (this is also important) 2 minutes shy of done, so very al dente, as the spaghetti will continue cooking in the oven. Drain well and let cool slightly.


In a large bowl, whisk eggs and milk together with salt and pepper. Add the garlic. Stir in the veggies, and then add all of the melty cheese and 2/3 of the aged cheese. Mix well. Add the spaghetti and, using tongs, stir well to mix all of the ingredients. Carefully, pour the mixture into the prepared cake pan, patting to fill all nooks of the pan. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on the top evenly.


Set the foil-wrapped pan on a baking sheet to catch any vagrant drips.


Bake 40 to 45 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling and a knife inserted into the center of the pie and turned slightly will not release any loose egg batter into the center. If the top of your pie browns too quickly before the center is set, cover it with foil for the remaining cooking time.


Remove from the oven and let sit for 15 minutes to cool and solidify. Loosen the ring, and if necessary, cut along springform ring to loosen, then remove ring. Run a spatula underneath the pie to loosen the base and slide onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges.


Enjoy!

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