So I planned to post a good Super Bowl recipe this week, but I think I'm going to just skip ahead to something that I think would be perfect for a stay-at-home Valentine's Day dinner- or any weeknight dinner for that matter. I mentioned yesterday that my brother was here over the weekend participating in a fencing competition, so I wanted to make him a carb-rich dinner in preparation for his event. I decided to make pasta with an Italian turkey sausage tomato sauce and it was perfection! This is the homemade tomato sauce that Ina Garten uses in her turkey sausage lasagna recipe. Time didn't allow for the lasagna, so I decided to make the sauce alone to pour over steaming hot rigatoni. The sauce is a rich, hearty, slightly thick sauce that tastes like its straight out of an Italian kitchen. That is they way my brother described it. :) The ingredients are really simple, which I think is why the sauce tastes so authentic. It only takes about 15 minutes to pull the sauce together and about 20 minutes of patience while the ingredients get married. Like most sauces, it tastes even better the next day. Love it...
Here is what you need and what to do:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 pounds Italian turkey sausage (spicy and/or sweet), casings removed
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes in puree
1 6 oz can tomato paste
Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
2 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Heat the olive oil in a 10 to 12 inch skillet over medium-low heat. Add the chopped onions and cook them for about 5 minutes or until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
2. Add the sausage and break it up with a wooden spoon or fork. Cook the sausage for about 8-10 minutes, or until its no longer pink.
3. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, parsley, basil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes (if using). Stir the sauce and let it simmer over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes until it has slightly thickened.
Serve hot over your choice of pasta. Enjoy!
Images by me