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St. Louis Wedding Mostaccioli

No St. Louis wedding reception would be complete without mostaccioli. With a slightly sweet tomato sauce, this wonderful homemade pasta recipe has melted Mozzarella balls on top. Remember your special night with this fantastic dish.

  • 16 ounces big noodles such as mostaccioli rigati
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Olive oil (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes (or 2 cans regular tomatoes and add about 2 tsp. sugar)
  • 2 cans tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup italian salad dressing
  • 1/4 cup chianti
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
  • fresh mozzarella balls in brine
  1. Begin by preparing your sauce. This may take awhile. Start by sauteeing the onion and garlic in the olive oil in the bottom of your stock pot.
  2. First heat the olive oil until the top looks a bit cloudy, but before it smokes, then toss in your onion and garlic. Saute until transparent and tender, but not brown.
  3. Add all ingredients except basil. It is important that this sauce be slightly sweet, rather than salty, in order to be a true St. Louis style mostaccioli.
  4. But you're eating it, and if you don't want it sweet, by all means, don't sweeten. As it is, the stewed tomatoes add just the right amount of sweetness, bringing out the natural flavour of the tomato without making it too sweet.
  5. Simmer down the sauce until it looks pretty thick and chunky, and not too watery. The last 15 minutes of the sauce add the basil, prepare your noodles, and place in a large baking dish. Pour the finished sauce over the top (if you made too much, don't worry. It freezes great, and is a lovely spaghetti and pizza sauce as well).
  6. Stud the top with the fresh mozzarella balls, and bake in a 350 degree F oven for about 30 minutes. Serve hot and gooey.

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Not ever having attended a wedding in St. Louis, I'll take the author's word at face value that this is standard fare at receptions there. This would make a nice vegetarian pasta dish, but for my tastes, it really needs the addition of either ground beef or some nice Italian sausage. Crumbles or slices would work equally well in my opinion. I can easily see us making this up some evening.


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