Oh yas. That’s right.
I was craving something really good, and comforting last week. Maybe it’s because it’s almost finals week, or maybe it’s because I’m addicted to carbs? Either way, this pasta hit the spot.
Are you a short pasta fan or a long pasta fan? This is a real debate for some people. This pasta might just bring you over to team short pasta. For me- I like it all, long, short, skinny, fat, if it is pasta, I’m ALL about it.
I am currently involved in a love affair with De Cecco pasta. It’s the perfect consistency and it’s made with really good ingredients. Like if Ina Garten were to say “you want to use REALLY GOOD pasta” this is exactly what she is talking about. Sometimes I revert back to the true peasant I am and I don’t buy “the REALLY GOOD” stuff, but when this is on sale, I stock up. The best part of this entire recipe is the pool of chipotle cream sauce that the pasta bathes in before you bake it. I want to drown my face in a bowl of this stuff, it is so good.
And if that wasn’t enough, you top this bad boy with a layer of mozzarella and Parmesan and call it a day. Get into it!
- 1 pound Italian sausage, casing removed
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 package of frozen spinach
- 1 pound your fav short pasta, I used rigatoni
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1½ cups skim milk
- 2 chipotle peppers in their adobo sauce
- 8 oz mozzarella grated
- 2 tablespoons parmesean
- fresh basil for topping
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high. Add the sausage and brown all over.
- Add the red bell pepper, onion, garlic and frozen spinach (drain the spinach before adding)
- Sauté another 3 minutes, until the onions are translucent.
- Season with a tiny pinch of salt and pepper
- In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Add the pasta and cook until right under al dente, 5 to 6 minutes. It's going to bake in the oven later as well so you don't want the pasta overdone.
- Add cooked pasta to the sausage mix and toss to combine.
- While the pasta is boiling melt the butter in a small saucepan.
- Add the flour and whisk for a couple of minutes.
- Add the milk and whisk until creamy, 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer cream sauce to a food processor and add the chipotle peppers with their adobo sauce. Pulse to combine.
- Taste it. If you want more spicy add another pepper or two.
- Add spicy cream sauce to the pasta/sausage mix. Toss to combine.
- Transfer to a 9×13 baking dish and cover with shredded mozzarella and parmesan.
- Bake, uncovered for 30 minutes, or until cheese is browning and bubbly.
- Top with fresh basil and then eat the entire pan.