Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Baked Ziti with Sausage

Tonight we enjoyed this delicious skillet dish! I actually prepared it in my big skillet but when it came time to throw it in the oven I wasn't keen on putting my skillet in the oven so I transferred everything to a greased 9x13-in. pan and baked it in that! Delicious!

Baked Ziti with Sausage

1 (28 oz) can whole peeled tomatoes
1 lb. Italian sausage, casings removed (I used our last pack of pork sausage)
6 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed (I pressed)
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. salt (which I will omit when I make this again- it didn't need it in my opinion)
3 c. water
12 ounces dry ziti or penne pasta
1/2 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 c. chopped fresh basil leaves
Ground black pepper
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 475 degrees. Pulse tomatoes with their juice in food processor until coarsely ground and no large pieces remain, about 12 pulses.
In a 12-in. ovensafe nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, cook sausage, breaking apart meat, until lightly browned and no longer pink, 3-5 minutes.
Stir in garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in processed tomatoes and 1/2 tsp. salt (if using).
Reduce heat to med-low and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes no longer taste raw, about 10 minutes. Be sure to simmer gently or sauce will become too thick.
Stir in water, then add pasta. Cover, increase heat to medium-high and cook, stirring often and adjusting heat to maintain vigorous simmer, until pasta is tender, about 15-18 minutes.
Stir in cream, parmesan and basil; season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with mozzarella evenly over top. Place skillet (or 9x13) in oven and bake until cheese melts and browns, 10-15 minutes. Serves 4-6

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