Baked ziti is a bad cliché: overcooked pasta in a dull, grainy sauce topped with a rubbery mass of mozzarella. The cooks at America's Test Kitchen wanted to rescue baked ziti so they could have perfectly al dente pasta, a rich and flavorful sauce, and melted cheese in every bite.
To do so, they started at the beginning, undercooking their pasta and making their own quick tomato sauce. But one thing they did like about some of their research recipes was the use of an alfredo sauce for extra flavor—but they didn't want to spend the time making their own, and they certainly didn't want to use a nasty supermarket version. Instead, they created a quick recipe that used an unexpected ingredient and made the sauce creamy and rich.
Watch the video here for step-by-step instructions or get the recipe at America's Test Kitchen (free registration required).