America's Test Kitchen Skillet Baked Ziti


1 tablespoon olive oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
salt & fresh ground pepper
1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
3 cups water
12 ounces ziti pasta (3 3/4 cups)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 cup fresh basil leaf, minced
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded


1.Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 475.
2.Combine oil, garlic, pepper flakes, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in 12-inch ovensafe nonstick skillet and saute over medium-high heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. (If your skillet is not ovensafe, transfer the pasta mixture into a shallow 2-quart casserole dish before sprinkling with the cheese and baking).
3.Add crushed tomatoes, water, ziti and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
4.Cover and cook, stirring often and adjusting heat as needed to maintain vigorous simmer, until ziti is almost tender, 15-18 minutes.
5.Stir in cream, Parmesan, and basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
6.Sprinkle mozzarella evenly over ziti. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until cheese has melted and browned, about 10 minutes. Serve.

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