The Lab: Cheesy & Smokey Pasta Bake

I haven’t shared a recipe in a while, so it’s about time I got back to the kitchen to cook something up for you all. Just a word of warning…this may be quite unhealthy, with all the fattening ingredients, but hey, we can all indulge once in a while, right? So, remember when I said in a previous post about the Good Food Festival & Market that I bought a pack of super hot pepperettes and they would feature in a future blog? This is that blog.


I was thinking of using the pepperettes with chicken or fish, but decided to do a pasta dish instead. We all love comfort food, and Mac & Cheese is one of the popular ones, especially since they’re readily available in your local grocery and easy to make out of the box; but, nothing beats homemade Mac & Cheese. This is essentially a Mac & Cheese recipe, but I’m not using macaroni in this dish, but a pasta called Capunti. I hope you all enjoy this recipe and take this moment to indulge.



  • 1000g Capunti Pasta
  • 3 Medium Sized Tomatoes (chopped)
  • 1 Medium Sized Red Onion (diced)
  • 150g Super Hot Pepperettes (diced)
  • 380g Tex Mex Blend Shredded Cheese (Mozzarella, Cheddar, Monterey Jack)
  • 380g Double Cheddar Blend Shredded Cheese (White & Mild Cheddar)
  • 475g Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 L Buttermilk
  • 100g Jamon Serrano
  • 1 Pkg Ground Sirloin
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Paprika
  • Red Wine
  • 1/2 Tbsp Flour
  • Olive Oil



  1. Boil water in a large pot and cook pasta for 2/3rds of the required time.
  2. Drain water from pasta and stop cooking process with cold water and set aside.
  3. Heat a large pot and pour some olive oil.
  4. Add the Jamon Serrano and wait until it crisps up.
  5. Add the diced onions and cook until slightly browned.
  6. Add the chopped tomatoes to the pot and cook until slightly stewed.
  7. Add the Ground Sirloin, and season with Ground Black Pepper and Paprika.
  8. Pour some Red Wine into the pot so the mixture doesn’t dry up.
  9. Once the Sirloin has been cooked and sauce reduced, add the diced Pepperettes.
  10. Add the Buttermilk and thicken with flour.
  11. Turn stove off, and add Ricotta cheese to the mixture and stir well.
  12. Pour the pasta into the pot and mix well.
  13. Add the Tex Mex blend shredded cheese and mix well.
  14. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  15. Pour mixture in glass bakeware.
  16. Top mixture with the Double Cheddar blend shredded cheese.
  17. Season with some Ground Black Pepper.
  18. Bake in oven for 20 minutes.


I hope you all enjoy this recipe! ‘Til next time…


2 thoughts on “The Lab: Cheesy & Smokey Pasta Bake

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