Heat the oven to 500°F. In a large pot, bring 3 quarts of water to a boil. In a large bowl, combine the cream with all but 2 Tbs. of the cheese, 1/4 tsp. salt, and white pepper to taste.
In a hot oven, the heavy cream in this recipe reduces and thickens while the Parmesan melts for an alfredo-like baked pasta.
When the water is boiling, salt it generously and add the ziti. Undercook the pasta slightly so that it’s a bit toothier than al dente, 1 to 2 minutes less than the package directions. Drain well. Add the pasta to the cream mixture. Divide among four individual shallow ceramic gratin dishes (6 to 8 inches wide). Sprinkle with the remaining cheese and dot with the butter. Bake until the pasta is bubbly and hot and the edges begin to brown, about 10 minutes. Don't overbake or the sauce may separate. Let rest for 3 to 5 minutes before serving.
nutrition information (per serving):
per main-course serving;
Photo: Scott Phillips