Pizza Hut Buffet Rotini or Who Cares Pasta X*#!!!!
Recently, I wound up at Pizza Hut with my sons for the famed Pizza Hut Buffet lunch. All it is, as many know, is pizza and a hot dish of pasta, salad and such. We got there at and they were already out of pasta. The waiter gave me a withering look and said, Madame, you all eat too much. The pasta is gone. Over. No more. Considering I hadn’t even arrived when there was even rumor of pasta, I thought that was a bit biting - not to mention that waiter was not likely to win Hospitality Award of the Year with that remark. I mentioned the pasta famine to the restaurant manager and harried but accomodating, he assured us that, ‘more pasta would indeed make its way to the buffet table’. My eldest son sat and sat. We all nibbled on crust of pan pizza while waiting with him. I gently suggested that the pasta might not make a reappearance and we were waiting on air. Besides which, all it was just rotini and commercial sauce, baked with mozzarella. Hardly complex stuff. Chances are, as a cookbook author and chef, I could replicate it at home. No, said he. We come here for at least that and that we shall have. If not, more complaints were due. “And furthermore, when the pasta does come out, saunter over to the buffet, said my son, act as if it is nothing – as if we are not even hungry or waiting desperately for the pasta to make an appearance.Feign nonchalance, like, ‘Pasta? Who cares…?”. We all cracked up. The remark and the gesture that went with it (a fling of the hand over one shoulder and an indifferent toss of the head) were so out of left field. We also laughed because it was much ado over nothing and it shows you how het up you can be over really unexceptional (but good) pasta you think somehow you are entitled to and gotta have. The pasta did arrive (minutes before the buffet closed) and ever since then, it is a family joke. We named this dish Pasta-Who-Cares? in honor of Pizza Hut but mostly to rib my son Jonathan. You can make this pasta dish at home again and again and be assured, you will never run out.
1 pound dry rotini pasta shape
2 cups, approximately, marinara sauce such as Prego
1 cup finely diced, lightly sautéed green pepper
½ cup thin sliced, pepperoni
Salt, pepper, garlic powder, to taste
1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Prepare pasta as per package instructions.
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Drain and toss with the marinara sauce, green peppers and pepperoni.
Season lightly with spices. Spoon into a prepared 3-4 quart oven baking dish. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese on top.
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