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Baked pasta with sausage, tomatoes and mushrooms

Recipe: Baked pasta with sausage, tomatoes and mushrooms

Remarks:

    This dish will and can be made a day ahead and re-heated.

Servings:
Serves 8 and can be easily doubled.

Ingredients:

    1 16oz box of pasta, your choice. I like penne or bow ties best for this dish.

    2-3 pounds of Italian sausage. For a healthy version you can use turkey sausage. You can also use loose sausage (not in the casing). I used a combo of mild Italian and Sundried Tomato/Basil sausages for one version and hot Italian sausage for the other. Cut the sausage into 1/4" slices or break up the loose meat into bite-sized pieces.

    3 Tbl olive oil
    1lb sliced mushrooms. Button mushrooms or exotic, your choice
    2 cups diced Vidalia onion
    2 Tbl butter
    1 cup diced fresh basil
    1 Tbl Italian spice blend
    4 cloves garlic diced (jar garlic, again, is fine. 4 tsp)
    1 cup dry white wine
    2 cups diced tomatoes. I use organic tomatoes in a can.
    1 cup crushed tomatoes. I use organic fire-roasted tomatoes in a can. Muir Glen is one brand.
    1 cup Parmesan or Asiago-Romano finely grated
    2 cups shredded mozzarella (this can be low-fat)

Instructions:

    Cook the pasta according to box instructions. Drain and put in a 9 X 13" ovenproof pan. Brown the sausage in the olive oil until the edges are browned and there is no longer any pink in the middle. This will take about 5 - 7 minutes on medium high. Stir often.

    Remove the sausage but leave the drippings in the sauté pan. Add the mushrooms, onion and butter. Cook until mushrooms and onion are soft. 5 minutes should do it. Add the basil, Italian spices and the wine. Cook down on medium high until most of the liquid is gone.

    Add the diced tomatoes, the crushed tomatoes and garlic. Heat until all ingredients are warmed. Pour this combination and the sausage in with the pasta. Stir until well blended. Now add the cheese and stir again until well blended.

    Cool. This can now be covered in plastic wrap and stored in the refrigerator until you want to heat it and serve. (DO NOT cover with aluminum foil. The tomatoes eat holes in the foil and you have a spoiled dinner).

    When ready to cook remove plastic wrap, if necessary, and cover with aluminum foil. Heat at 350 degrees for 30 - 45 minutes until piping hot.

Serving Suggestions:

    Serve with salad and garlic bread.

Enjoy. Cheers! Zola

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