Today I am so lucky to have Amber from Bluebonnets & Brownies here to share a recipe for Weeknight Sausage Pasta with all of you! It’s really a good thing for everyone… If I was writing, you’d probably be reading all about hospital food… And, no one wants that!
I met Amber at the Big Summer Potluck last summer, and we have been good friends ever since! Not only is she a great friend of mine, but she is the authority on Tex-Mex comfort food! She’s also a great baker, and I’d recommend checking out her Movie Theatre Cookies!
Thank you, Amber, for stopping by! I think I may take your advice and have my hubby make this pasta for me next week!
I’m so happy I could help Jen out with a guest post while she gets better. Jen, we want you to get better as quickly as possible!
Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Amber, and my blog is called Bluebonnets & Brownies. I’m a born and raised Texan living in New Jersey. The name of my blog is taken from the Texas state flower. A lot of people see that name and think I’m trying to channel some sort of prairie head gear. I promise, I’m not!
I blog a lot about Tex-Mex and Southern foods because it’s my way of reconnecting to my childhood. But today, rather than Southern comfort food, I’ve just got some straight up “American” comfort food.
This sausage pasta comes together in a doddle, and makes enough for a day or two of leftovers, or can go straight into the freezer for future meals.
This is the sort of thing I’d make for Jen if I lived close by. Or something her hubby could put together easily and without a lot of fuss. It’s warm, comforting and easy. Exactly what you want when you’re feeling under the weather.
The dish relies on jarred pasta sauce, which I promise you, if you buy the right one, isn’t all evilness and high fructose corn syrup. But you can easily sub in your own fresh red sauce if you so desire.
Weeknight Sausage Pasta
1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb. ground sweet Italian sausage (I used hamburger-like patties)
1/2 c. chopped Cremini or button mushrooms (or more, this is at your discretion)
1 tbsp garlic powder or 4 cloves of fresh chopped garlic
salt and pepper to taste
1 16 oz jar of red pasta sauce (I used Classico Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic)
2 “jars” of water
1 lb. pasta of your choosing – I used whole wheat Rotini and Bowties. They come in 1 lb boxes, but I had about 1/2 a box of each.
fresh basil, chopped
parmesan cheese if desired
red chili flakes if desired
Start by heating olive oil in a large Dutch oven or stock pot. When the oil has become hot enough to bubble and spreads easily along the bottom of the pan, add ground sausage. Break up any clumps with a potato masher. Continue to brown the sausage until you have a slight crust on some pieces, and no pink, stirring often.
Add in chopped mushrooms and allow to brown for 2-3 minutes more, stirring often. Add in garlic powder, salt and pepper.
Cover in pasta sauce, then fill jar to the lower rim with water and pour into pot. Add a second jar of water, then stir.
Add the entire box of dry pasta directly to the pan. Do not cover. Stir to make sure all pasta is submerged, and then simmer for the amount of time the box of pasta says it requires. It may take a little longer due to using non-boiling water, but not much longer.
When the pasta is al dente, the sauce should also have thickened around the pasta. Chop fresh basil and add it to the pasta dish. Garnish with parmesan cheese or red chili flakes as desired.
Freezes like a dream, and reheats beautifully.