March 15, 2010
I love this meal. It’s simple. It’s quick. It’s hearty and affordable. You’ll spend about $15 and get a huge pasta meal that, unless you have 4 ravenous or 6 people total, will give you leftovers (yummy even cold). And, if you want to save a few bucks or keep it vegetarian, just skip the sausage. It’s still delicious.
If you’re like me and keep roasted cherry tomatoes in the fridge for when you need a quick meal, this will take 30 minutes max to throw together. Otherwise, start roasting the tomatoes about 45 minutes before dinnertime. Go back to whatever you were doing for 15 minutes, then take the last 30 to start putting dinner together. What more is there to say?
Penne with Roasted Tomatoes, Sausage & Ricotta
(can be served to kids 10+ mos)
2 pints organic cherry or grape tomatoes
1/3 c organic olive oil, plus more for sauteing sausage
1 lb organic penne
1 lb sweet italian sausage (turkey or pork), cut into 1″ pieces
7 oz ricotta (about 1/2 of a 15 oz container)
salt and pepper
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees and roast tomatoes: throw them in a roasting pan with 1/3 c olive oil and a healthy sprinkle of salt. Cook for 45 minutes, unattended.
2. 15 minutes into your roasting time, put a large pot of salted water on medium-high heat (about 6 qts water to 2 tbs salt). Bring to a boil. Add penne and cook until al dente. Drain, saving a mugful of cooking water. Set pasta aside.
3. Very lightly coat the bottom of the pot you cooked your pasta in with olive oil. When hot, add sausage and saute until cooked through, about 5-10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to remove cooked sausage from pot and drain remaining fat.
4. Return pasta to pot. Add sausage and roasted tomatoes, complete with oil and accumulated juices. Stir in ricotta and season with salt and pepper. The oil and juices from the tomatoes should thin the ricotta nicely. If not—if it’s too thick—use some of the reserved pasta cooking water to thin it to your desired consistency.