Baked Gemelli with Herb Pinwheels

Today is National Croissant Day. When it comes to pastries, Croissants rank right up there as my favorite. I love Croissant Sandwiches. And I adore Almond Croissants for breakfast. Here in American, we think we know Croissants. What we know are grocery store bakeries. If you can, find a true French Bakery. What a difference!

How I wish I had the skill and patience to make Croissants at home. I can tell you how to cheat and make those grocery bakeries Croissants better. It really doesn’t take much. When it comes to bucket lists of foods I’d like to master, Croissants are right up at the top.

That said, the best I can hope for to celebrate National Croissant Day is to find a good bakery. Since moving from Las Vegas and the Paris Hotel with it’s amazing French Bakery, cheating with store-bought Croissants will have to do. Another reason to master Croissants from scratch.

Croissants made me think of Crescents. Yeah, I know not the same, but work with me here. This recipe might seem a bit familiar. I shared the original rendition, Italian Baked Ziti with Cheesy Pinwheels for Dine with a Friend Day back in November. While very similar, there are a few differences here. For one thing this recipe uses Gemelli Pasta rather than Ziti. Roasted Garlic Powder has been added, and the Pinwheels are all about the herbs rather than the cheese. While Hubby liked the Ziti version, he’s not a fan if cheesy pinwheels. This rendition hit the mark with him. Naturally, his thumbs up made me happy.

Baked Gemelli with Herb Pinwheels
3 cups Baby Spinach
2-1/2 cups Gemelli Pasta, uncooked
1/2 lb Ground Beef
1/2 lb Italian Sausage
Italian Seasoning to taste
Roasted Garlic Powder to taste
Kosher Salt to taste
1 (26 oz) jar Marinara Sauce
2 cups Italian Cheese Blend
1 can Crescent Dough Sheets

Heat oven to 375-degrees. Spray a 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray.

Rinse spinach leaves, pat dry. Cut away any stems, leaving only the tender leaves. Break into smaller pieces that are still visible once mixed into the pasta casserole. Set aside.

Cook pasta al-dente, about 9 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, crumble ground beef and Italian Sausage together. As the meat browns, break into small pieces. Season with a generous amount of Italian Seasonings, Garlic Powder and Kosher Salt.

Add marinara sauce and cooked pasta to the meat mixture. Stir, taste and adjust seasoning as desired.

Scatter spinach leaves over the pasta mixture. Gently fold spinach into the mixture. Spoon pasta into the prepared casserole dish. Spread cheese over the top of the casserole and set aside.

Unroll crescent dough. Sprinkle with Italian Seasoning and garlic powder. Starting at long end, roll into pinwheels. Using a serrated knife, cut into 15 rounds. Press flat and arrange on the top of the casserole.

Bake 15 minutes or until crescents are golden brown and flaky.

Serve with a simple toss salad for a delicious supper.

Author: Rosemarie's Kitchen

I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and avid home cook.I believe in eating healthy whenever possible, while still managing to indulge in life's pleasures.

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