Serves 16| Hands-On Time: 30m | Total Time: 1hr 25m
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 2 28-ounce cans crushed tomatoes
- 4 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 3 pounds penne
- 4 5-ounce packages baby spinach
- 2 pounds mozzarella, grated (about 8 cups)
- 1 cup grated Parmesan (about 4 ounces)
- Divide the oil between 2 large saucepans and heat over medium heat. Divide the garlic and sun-dried tomatoes between the saucepans and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Divide the crushed tomatoes between the saucepans.
- Break up the whole tomatoes by cutting them up with scissors (while in the can) or by crushing them with your hands. Divide the tomatoes and vinegar between the saucepans; season each with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes.
- Meanwhile, bring 2 large pots of water to a boil; add 1 tablespoon salt to each. Divide the pasta between the pots; cook for half the recommended time on the package directions (the pasta will continue to cook when it is baked). Drain the pasta; return it to the pots.
- Divide the spinach between the saucepans of sauce and cook, stirring, until the spinach begins to wilt, about 1 minute. Pour a saucepan of tomato sauce into each of the pasta pots and toss to combine.
- Divide one of the pots of the pasta mixture among four 8-inch square baking dishes (the dishes will be halfway full). Sprinkle each with 1 cup of the mozzarella. Dividing evenly among the dishes, top with the remaining pot of pasta mixture. Sprinkle each with 1 cup of the remaining mozzarella and ¼ cup of the Parmesan.
- To eat tonight: Bake the pasta on a rimmed baking sheet at 400° F until bubbling and beginning to brown, 15 to 20 minutes.
- To freeze and cook later: Freeze the unbaked pasta, tightly sealed, for up to 3 months. To cook, thaw the pasta and bake, uncovered, on a rimmed baking sheet at 400° F until heated through, bubbling, and beginning to brown, 25 to 30 minutes.
For the single family recipe of this, go to realsimple.com and search for Baked Penne with Spinach.