Cheese and tomato penne casserole

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This is adapted from a recipe my Grandmother made a long time ago when my Mom visited her in Florida. My Grandparents are no longer snowbirds, so I know it’s been quite a while. Mom and I (and hopefully my sister) meet on Wednesdays at my Grandparents for lunch, and my Grandmother requested this casserole. It was my turn to cook so I got the recipe from Mom. I hope I didn’t modify it too much but it needed some modernization. Today is a test run, Jeff’s Mom and Stepdad are coming for lunch tomorrow and we’ll eat this one, then I’ll make another Tues or Wed for my Grandparents.

Cheese and tomato penne casserole

Makes a large 9×13″ casserole dish full

1 pound of ziti or penne cooked al dente and drained (not rinsed- and be sure to salt the cooking water well) 2 lb pack shown in pic

1 each red and green peppers, sliced and sauteed for 5 minutes

8oz shredded cheddar (I used Tex Mex which is pre-shredded cheddar with a few hot pepper flakes) half the amount shown

8oz shredded monterey jack -half the amount shown

28oz can quality diced tomatoes

1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper

1 cup 5% blend

3/4 cup light sour cream

1 tsp mural of flavor or italian seasonings and 1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes (I would add 1 tbsp if it was just for us)

1/2 cup or enough panko breadcrumbs to cover top, then sprinkle liberally with fresh grated parmesan cheese

While the pasta is cooking saute the peppers and place all other ingredients in a large bowl. Drain and add pasta and sauteed peppers, mix and turn into large oiled baking dish.

Bake at 350 for 30 min uncovered. Move to broiler rack and broil on high until top is browned and crispy.

This recipe isn’t really something I would normally make since it’s so heavy on cheese and light on vegetables. But it is delicious and creamy and good.

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