Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Baked Pasta with Italian Sausage

I have a fairly good excuse for not posting for a week. No, it's not because I haven't been eating. On the contrary. I've been pigging out. I had restaurant and takeout food all weekend and then cooked a baked pasta Sunday night that could feed a family of six. I did end up giving one portion to my Korean teacher who proceeded to be very confused as to why I was giving her food. She thought I had made it for her daughter - I guess I'll find out tomorrow if she liked it.

The other (more legitimate) reason for why I haven't posted since last week is that I've been studying for my biochemistry test and freaking out about my thesis. Now that one of them is over, I can cook and bake a little more. At least until my next test. Unfortunately, I also don't have a photo of tonight's dish. I know, I know. The pictures on food blogs are what motivate me to make the dish too. I'm sorry. But take my word when I say that this is my absolute favorite baked pasta. I make it at least once a semester, eat it for 3 days straight afterwards, love it more than Maggiano's Italian sausage pasta, and even had a little competition for my aunt for the best baked pasta (this pasta won over her lasagna).

Baked Pasta with Italian Sausage
1 (12 oz) pkg dry pasta (I used gemelli)
1 lb mild Italian sausage
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 to 1/2 cup red wine
2 tsp olive oil
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, drained
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1/2 Tbsp dried Italian herbs
1 Tbsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
3. Meanwhile, place sausage and onion in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until sausage is evenly browned and cooked through. Add the olive oil if the sausage doesn't produce enough grease for the onions.
4. Add garlic and wine and cook for 1 minute, stirring.
5. Stir in tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, herbs, salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
6. Toss with pasta and place in a 9x13-inch glass baking dish. Sprinkle the top with mozzarella. Bake for 20 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serves 6-8


  1. having fun making this, but so far i have made one major mistake: misread directions and put 2 Tbsp of Italian seasoning instead of 1/2. woah. the other thing was i wasn't really sure what to do with the olive oil, so i just tossed the noodles in it after i drained them. i had to use bowtie pasta because wal-mart (:[) didn't have gemelli. i think it smells AWESOME so i think it will be a hit! :)

  2. aaaannnnnnnd it was a delicious hit!!!! Happy Valentine's Day!!!

  3. YAY i'm so glad! Happy Valentine's Day!