Baked Pasta With Chicken Sausage
  • Servings: 8
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 med. red onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 c vodka (optional)
  • 1 28 oz can whole tomatoes with juice, lightly crushed with hands
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 c heavy cream
  • coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 lb rigatoni
  • 5-8 oz baby spinach
  • 12 oz smoked chicken sausage, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/4 in thick (If you can't find smoked chicken sausage, fresh chicken sausage from the deli works fine - just make sure you brown it first!)
  • 6 oz fontina cheese; 4 oz cut into 1/2 in cubes and 2 oz coarsely
  • grated
  • coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1/4 c grated parmesan cheese
  1. 1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for pasta. For sauce, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook until transarent, about 3 minutes. Add garlic. Remove from heat; add vodka, if desired. Return to heat and cook until almst evaporated, 1 minute.
  2. Add tomatoes and oregano to skillet; cook until tomatoes are falling apart, 10-15 min. Add cream; cook until warmed through, about 5 min. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400. Cook pasta until just al dente. Add spinach, and cook until just wilted. Drain, return contents to pot.
  4. Add tomato sauce, sausage, and cubed fontina cheese to pot; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Divide evenly beween 2 shallow 1 1/2 qt baking dishes.
  5. Top with grated fontina and parmesan. Bake until browned and edges are crisp, about 20-30 minutes.
This recipe is for 2 pans of pasta. You can freeze the other half for up to 3 months. To freeze, prepare thru step 4; let cool completely, cover tightly w/ plastic wrap, and place in freezer. To cook frozen pasta: Do not thaw before baking. Remove plastic wrap and cover with foil. Cook until heated through, 1.5 to 1.75 hours. Remove foil then continue from step 5.