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Baked Pesto Pasta

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I saw this easy Pesto pasta dish, and thought it sounded wonderful.  Come to find out, I would make some changes, as we threw out the whole pan!!  So sad…  The béchamel sauce called for WAY too much flour, and as I was making it I questioned it, but wanted to follow the recipe.  So the recipe below is for what I would do NEXT time, and not how it flopped this time around.  The idea and the other flavors were great, but there was just too much flour, and that was really all you could taste.

Serves 6-8 for about $0.70/serving

INGREDIENTS:

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1 lb. penne pasta – ($0.98)
4 tablespoons butter – ($0.25)
1 cup milk
1 cup chicken or veggie stock – ($0.34)
1 Tbsp. flour
3/4 cup fresh basil pesto – ($3.00)
1 cup grated cheese – ($1.00)

DIRECTIONS:

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Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a baking dish. Boil your pasta until al dente. In a saucepan melt your butter. Add in your flour a bit at a time, while alternating and pouring in the milk and stock. (You can see how lumpy the four was, I had to whisk like a mad woman because of all the flour to get it too a smooth texture). Whisk until the flour has fully dissolved and the liquid has thickened.

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Remove from the heat and stir in your pesto.

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Scoop your pasta into the baking dish and pour sauce over pasta.

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Top with the grated cheese.

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Bake for about 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted.

ENJOY!!