The other day a friend said to me that they love cooking fall recipes in the fall and it is so true. One of my favorite dishes to make on a chilly day is baked penne with sausage. This recipe was inspired by the Barefoot Contessa. It is such a satisfying dish and so easy to make (if you know me, you know I like easy recipes that taste amazing!). I often make this when we have friends over for dinner, it can be made in advance and baked in the oven just before serving, so you have more time to spend with guests vs cooking in the kitchen while they’re having all the fun.
Here is what you will need:
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 garlic cloves diced
- 1 pound of Italian sausage with casing removed
- 1 tsp of crushed red pepper flakes
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup of white wine
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- 1/2 cup of half & half
- 2 tbsp of tomato sauce (I used some that I had frozen)
- 450g of penne or rigatoni
- Grated parmesan cheese
- Chopped fresh parsley for garnish
Here is how to make it:
- Heat the olive oil in a large heavy dutch oven over medium heat and add the onion.
- Cook the onion until tender (approximately 5 minutes) and add the sausage for about 5 minutes and then start to break it up into smaller pieces.
- Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Pour the wine and bring to a boil stirring occasionally for a couple more minutes.
- Add the heavy cream, half and half and tomato sauce stir and lower the heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the sauce thickens.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and the penne to the package instructions. Drain and add the pasta to the sauce. Stir to combine.
- Scoop the pasta into shallow oven proof serving bowls. Place the bowls on a baking sheet. Add parmesan cheese to the tops of each pasta bowl and place in the oven and broil for a few minutes or until the cheese melts and the pasta just starts to brown.
- Take out of the oven, garnish with parsley and serve.
I hope this recipe inspires you to be creative in your kitchen – enjoy!