Easy Tetrazzini! Fun to say, make and eat.  This is the quickest of all “baked/make-ahead” pasta dishes. It is heading straight to the top of my list of “Perfect Pasta Recipes”. Because it is so simple,  it will help provide you time and opportunity to sit down at the table with friends and family during this holiday season.
This recipe can be made with or without bacon, with or without turkey and you can use your choice of veggies. Here is the recipe exactly how I made it last Saturday night, without the turkey, since Thanksgiving had not yet happened. I made it for a group of 10 foodie friends, and they absolutely loved it. This Friday I will make it again, with 2 cups leftover Turkey meat and I’ll add 1/2 cup extra half and half or 1/2 cup broth, to give a little more liquid because of the added turkey.
Easy Tetrazzini
Serves 10 as a side dish, 4-6 as a main dish
12 oz. Al Dente Pasta® (just about any flavor)
6 thick-cut bacon slices, cut into 1/2 inch pieces (about 6 oz.)
1 cup (4 oz) thinly sliced stemmed shitake mushrooms
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1.5 cups Half and Half
10 oz. frozen mixed vegetables.
1 cup (3 oz) grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
Bring large pot of water to boil for pasta.Butter a 13 x 9 x 2 glass or ceramic baking dish. Cook bacon in large skillet over medium high heat until crisp. Transfer bacon to paper towels and drain all but about 4 Tbsp. bacon fat from skillet. Add mushrooms. Saute until  golden. Add garlic and saute one more minute.
Cook pasta for just 2 minutes. Put frozen veggies in the colander and drain the pasta over veggies. Add veggies, pasta,cream and half of the Parmesan back to skillet with mushrooms. Stir in bacon. (If using turkey, add now and don’t forget to add a little extra liquid) Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with Panko Bread Crumbs and remainder of Parmesan. At this point, if serving right away and it is still hot, simply put under broiler for a couple minutes to toast the bread crumbs. If making it ahead of time, then bake in a 350 oven, covered with aluminum foil for 25 minutes and remove foil for last 10 minutes.
Variations: If not using bacon, saute mushrooms in olive oil and increase quantity of mushrooms to 8 oz.
Tetrazzini, hot out of the oven!

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