Baked Ziti Mornay with Sausage & Fennel
- 3 TBL butter
- 3 TBL. Flour
- 2 ½ cups milk
- pinch white pepper
- Pinch nutmeg
- 8 oz. DioGuardi’s Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 2 TBL Olive oil
- 1 large fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 lb. DioGuardi’s Italian sausage hot or mild
cooked cut into ½ inch pieces
- 1 lb. La Molisanna Ziti or Penne pasta, cooked al dente DioGuardi’s
¼ cup fresh basil, cut into thin strips
In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the flour and cook for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk, ½ cup at a time. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Cook, stirring constantly for 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in ½ cup of the grated cheese. Set aside and keep warm.
In a large sauté pan, over medium heat, add the oil. Cook the sausage until golden brown and cooked through (15-20 min.) remove sausage from pan, add the fennel. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the pasta, sausage and Mornay sauce. Mix well. Pour into a greased 2 quart oval baking dish. Sprinkle the top with cheese and place in the oven on the top rack. Bake until the top is golden brown and bubbly, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool slightly. Spoon onto serving plates and garnish with fresh basil.