Penne Alla Norma

monte WEEKLY SPECIALS 2/2/2015 Courtesy of 1 – 24 oz. jar of Monte Bene™ Tomato Basil pasta sauce 1 lb penne pasta 4 medium Italian eggplants 1 cup- fresh, cubed mozzarella ½ cup grated pecorino Romano cheese ½ cup vegetable oil 8 fresh basil leaves, chopped 1 tsp salt  
  1. Cut eggplant into 1/8″ lengthwise slices.
  2. With a 10″ deep saute pan on medium heat, saute all eggplants until wilted.
  3. Drain any leftover oil and sprinkle with salt.
  4. Add Monte Bene Tomato Basil pasta sauce to the eggplant.
  5. On medium heat, bring to the sauce to a simmer for 2 minutes.
  6. Take 1/2 cup of sauce and mix it with the cooked pasta so the pasta does not stick.
  7. Add the mozzarella and continue to simmer on medium heat for an additional 1 minute.
  8. Plate the pasta and top evenly with the sauce, eggplant, and mozzarella.
  9. Sprinkle evenly with Pecorino Romano cheese and basil.

Crunchy Cornmeal Tomatoes w/ Spicy Mayo


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1 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon hot sauce

1 teaspoon minced chives

1 cup yellow cornmeal plus extra if needed

1 teaspoon salt

4 Backyard Farms Tomatoes on the Vine, stems removed and each tomato cut into ¼ inch thick rounds

1 cup buttermilk

½ cup vegetable oil


Combine the mayonnaise, hot sauce and chives in a small bowl and set aside.  Combine the cornmeal and salt together and spread on a dish or baking sheet.

Coat each tomato slice in the buttermilk then coat both sides in cornmeal. Set the slices aside on a baking sheet. Use more cornmeal and salt if need be.

In a non-stick sauté pan heat the oil until it begins to shimmer. Add the tomato slices a few at a time and brown well on each side. Drain on paper towels. Place the slices on a serving platter and pass the mayo.





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Cooking spray

1 (8-ounce) package Neufchâtel Reduced Fat Cream Cheese, at room temperature

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, divided

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Pinch salt

5 ounces Cabot Alpine Cheddar*, grated and divided (about 1 1/4 cups)

1 slice white bread, crusts removed, processed into fine crumbs (about 3/4 cup)

1/2 cup chopped grape tomatoes

2 tablespoons minced red onion

*If Cabot Alpine Cheddar is not available, you can substitute for Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar.



  1. Preheat oven to 400° F. Coat small (about 2 1/2 cup) oven-proof baking dish with cooking spray.
  2.  In large bowl, beat Neufchatel with electric mixer until light and airy, about two minutes. Beat in 4 teaspoons of basil, pepper and salt. Add 1 cup of cheddar and breadcrumbs; beat until blended.
  3.  Spread mixture in prepared dish. Top with remaining 1/4 cup cheddar.
  4. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes or until heated through but not bubbling.
  5. Let cool on wire rack for about 10 minutes. Serve warm, topped with tomatoes, red onions and remaining 2 teaspoons basil.





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4 large or 6 small red beets

2 tbsp butter

½ tsp salt Small shallot, minced

3 cups vegetable broth

2 tsp fresh thyme

1 bay leaf

¼ tsp fresh ground black pepper

¼ cup FAGE Total Classic, FAGE Total 2% or FAGE Total 0%, plus a dollop for garnish

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wrap each beet in tinfoil and roast for 45 to 60 minutes or until tender. Set aside and allow to cool. Once cooled at room temperature, peel and cut into large chunks.
  3. In a medium to large sauce pot over medium heat, sauté the shallots, butter and salt until translucent. Cook for approximately 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add the vegetable broth, thyme, bay leaf, pepper and beets to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  5. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes or until beets are tender enough to purée. Remove pot from stove to cool.
  6. Purée soup in batches in a blender or use an immersion blender. Return puréed soup to pot, do not place on heat.
  7. Stir in FAGE Total. To serve, garnish with a dollop of FAGE Total.






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4 zucchini

2 onions

1 Pillsbury™ Refrigerated Pie Crust (from box), softened as directed on box

3 eggs

1 ¼ cups milk

2oz grated Parmesan cheese

½ teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary


  1. With sharp knife or mandolin, slice zucchini & onions; place on large bowl. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon salt over vegetables. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 8 hours.
  2. Heat oven to 350°F. Unroll pie crust in bottom of 11-inch quiche dish; press in bottom and up side of dish. Set aside.
  3. Remove vegetables from refrigerator; squeeze out excess liquid. (Squeeze with hands or press with back of spoon with vegetables in strainer.) Arrange vegetable slices in quiche dish.
  4. In separate medium bowl, lightly beat eggs, milk, cheese and rosemary. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour over zucchini slices.
  5. Bake 45 minutes or until top is light golden brown. Cool slightly before serving. Store in refrigerator.