Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Sausage Rigatoni in Spicy Vodka Sauce

Oh, do I love a 30 minute meal - especially one that results in a bowl of cheesy, tomatoey, slightly spicy pasta! Is there anything more comforting than a big bowl of pasta?

This is one of those dishes that would please even the pickiest of eaters. As written, the spice is very subtle but if you're serving young children, or people who are very sensitive to spice, just ditch the jalapeno and hot paprika. On the other hand, if you love your mouth on fire when you eat (I know some of you do!), leave the ribs/seeds in the jalapeno and up the hot paprika.

While this is total weeknight comfort food, it'd also be perfect to take someone or serve to guests. It makes a large portion and reheats beautifully!

I previously blogged this recipe three years ago and it deserved a revisit! 

Sausage Rigatoni in Spicy Vodka Sauce
1 pound rigatoni
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound sausage, casings removed (I use chicken sausage!)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 jalapeno, ribs and seeds removed, chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon Hungarian hot paprika
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
salt and fresh ground pepper
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes with basil
1/3 cup vodka
1 cup half & half
1 cup grated Asiago cheese
3 tablespoons chopped parsley 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the rigatoni and cook until al dente, about 12 minutes. Drain well.

Meanwhile, in a large saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter with the oil. Add the sauce and brown, 3-4 minutes, breaking up large pieces with a wooden spoon. Add the onions, jalapenos, and garlic and saute until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the paprika, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper (to taste) and cook 3 minutes more.

Add the diced tomatoes and simmer about 10 minutes. Add the vodka and half & half and cook a few minutes more. Toss in the cheese and chopped parsley. 

Add the drained pasta to the sauce and mix until the pasta is well coated.

Serve hot. 

Source: adapted from Sunny Anderson

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