A partial box of tri-color rotini left from April - I can't believe it's been in there almost a year - meant this recipe was an instant shoe-in. Eyeballing the ingredients, it looked like this one would be somewhat inexpensive too, which is always a bonus. Instead of using a jar of roasted red bell peppers, I roasted a fresh one by blackening it while doing the sausage, letting it sweat and then chopping it during the 30 minute simmer.
Rotini with Italian Sausage-Roasted Pepper Sauce
adapted from Cooking Club of America
click to print
1 lb. mild or hot bulk Italian sausage
3/4 c chopped green bell pepper
3/4 c chopped onion
3 large garlic cloves, minced
2 (14.5 oz) cans stewed tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 roasted red bell pepper, chopped
2 tbsp tomato paste
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper, or to taste
1/4 tsp salt
8 oz. rotini
Heat large skillet over medium-high heat until hot.
Add sausage; cook 10 minutes or until thoroughly cooked and no longer pink in center, stirring frequently. Remove excess drippings if necessary.
Add green bell pepper and onion; cook over medium heat 5 minutes or until tender; stirring occasionally.
Add garlic; cook and stir 1 minute, or until fragrant.
Stir in tomatoes, bring to a boil.
Cover; simmer over low heat 30 minutes, stirring occasionally and crushing tomatoes into smaller pieces, if desired.
Stir in roasted peppers, tomato paste, crushed red pepper and salt. Cook over medium heat an additional 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions; drain.
Serve sauce over pasta.
During cooking, I wasn't sure I'd be impressed with this but it turned out very well. The roasted pepper adds a sweet complimentary twist to the sausage. There is a pleasant mild heat, faintly noticeable on the tongue. Done in an hour with simple clean-up, this would be a good one for after work.
It is a little saucier than I prefer, even after cooking the sauce uncovered the last 10 minutes. I might even let more of the water cook off during the 30 minute simmer. I wonder how much less water there'd be if I'd used brand name stewed tomatoes.