Italian Pasta Al Forno

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  • Serves – 4
  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • cooking time: 45 minutes / 1 Hour


  • 1 Onion
  • 2 Cloves of garlic
  • A handful of fine beans
  • 2 Medium carrots
  • 1 Cup of peas
  • A handful of torn up basil leaves
  • 1/2 lbs Mince beef
  • 1 Tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 3 1/2 Cups of Farfalle pasta
  • 2 Cups grate Gruyere
  • 2 Cups grate parmesan
  • 1 Beef oxo cube
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Ketchup
  • 1 Cube of dark chocolate
  • 1 Tablespoon of Olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon of soy sauce


Prepare the vegetables first. Chop the fine beans and carrots into small pieces then put these to one side with the peas
Chop the garlic and onions. Heat the olive oil in a large pan or wok. Throw in the onions and cook for a few minutes, keeping them moving. Add the garlic and continue to fry until the onions start to get color. Remove the onions and garlic and put it to one side.
Boil two saucepans of salted water, adding the farfalle to one pan and the vegetables to the other to boil for around 10/15 minutes. Once cooked, strain the excess water from everything and put it to one side.
Clean the wok of all excess oil and keep on medium heat. Add the mincemeat and start breaking it down with a spatula.
Break up the oxo cube into the meat and keep moving while frying. Cook until all the meat is brown then put it into a strainer to drain the meat of excess fat.
Put the meat back into the heated wok and pour in the chopped tomatoes, garlic and onions. Turn the heat up a bit and stir.
Season the sauce with salt, pepper, and sugar to taste. Add the ketchup, soy sauce, and dark chocolate separately, stirring until the sauce gets a slightly darker color. Pre-heat the oven at 350F.
Keep stirring and seasoning the sauce to taste. Once you have finished seasoning, turn down the heat and leave the sauce to reduce, stirring occasionally. This will take around 10 minutes and the sauce and meat should become quite thick in texture.
Take the sauce off the heat and mix in the pasta and vegetables. In a separate dish, layer the mixture, adding the grated gruyere in between the layers of pasta. Cover the top with the remaining gruyere and parmesan, adding more if necessary to cover the entire thing.
Put into the oven and bake for 20/30 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and slightly crispy. Allow cooling for 5/10 minutes before serving.

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