Hey all, it’s Nelson at the keys today. Now that the holidays are over, it’s back to rush rush rush. Don’t get me wrong, I’m pretty fortunate to have a fun day-job, but it’s always nice to have some down time with the family. On the topic of holidays, how were yours? Leave us a comment below with some of your highlights. We love hearing from our readers!
Our holidays were great. We slept in a bit, stayed up a bit, hung out with friends, watched Star Wars, indulged a little too much in some awesome food and relaxed. I know… people usually relate these holidays to lots of visiting and hosting. This year was laid back for us. Most meals were hosted at other homes and we also got to try out some new restaurants… so we really did get to chill with the family.
Now that we’re back to work and school schedules, I find myself constantly thinking of meals that I can get on the table quickly, that are somewhat healthy… and oh yeah, that taste good too! This week I happened to have some leftover Nonna-approved tomato sauce and sweet Italian sausage in the fridge with no designated purpose. I’m not sure if you’ve seen a trend lately on our blog… pasta much? It must be the cold weather making me crave the carbs. Liz and I are both of Portuguese descent, but trust me when I say, no one at our home has ever complained when we pull out the Italian-inspired recipes.
The beauty of this recipe is that it was more like the non-recipe! I just threw together some leftover sauce, penne pasta with oven roasted sausage and topped that with a little roasted pepper and freshly grated parmesan cheese… et voila! Delicious, with lots of evening to spare.
Weeknight? No problem… make a quick meal, gather up the family, and eat well friends!
- 6 cups of your favourite tomato sauce (we used our own nonna-approved tomato sauce)
- 4 cups quality penne pasta (cooked as per the package instructions)
- 6 sweet Italian sausages (or spicy if you prefer)
- ½ cup jarred roasted peppers, cut in strips
- 10 leaves fresh basil, finely shredded
- Shaved parmesan cheese to top the dish
- Pre-heat the oven to 400 ºF.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Place the sausages on the baking sheet.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven and cook for 25 minutes.
- Place two large pots on the stove, each over it's own burner.
- Pour the sauce into the first large pot and set to medium.
- Let the sauce simmer slowly. Reduce temperature if necessary.
- Fill the second large pot with water, add salt and bring to a boil.
- Add the pasta and cook to al dente as per the package instructions.
- Pour the cooked pasta into a colander over the sink.
- Once the water has drained out, carefully pour the pasta into the pot with the sauce and shut off the burner to stop cooking the sauce and pasta.
- Once the sausages are cooked, remove them from the oven and slice into wheels.
- Add the sausages to the pasta and sauce.
- Add the roasted red peppers and basil, and stir.
- Adjust the salt and pepper if necessary.
- That's it... it's really ready to eat!
- Plate the pasta and don't forget to top it with the shaved parmesan.