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Italian Sausage & Mushroom Rigatoni

Spicy Italian sausage, mushroom and vegetable ragu tossed with rigatoni pasta and freshly grated parmesan.

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WHAT’S GOING  ON HERE:

Italian sausage:  Italian sausage is pork it comes in sweet, mild or hot. use whatever kind you prefer. Italian sausage has minimal fat so it creates a really flavorful and hearty ragu.

Mushrooms: Button or cremini mushrooms work great in this dish. Use whatever mushrooms you have on hand.

Vegetables: For my ragu i like to keep it simple with just onion, carrots and garlic. Onions and carrots are starchier vegetables so they thicken up the sauce nicely. Cover and cook the sauce till the carrots are tender. The finer the cut on the carrots the less time it will take. Sometimes i just opt for grated carrots to reduce even more time.

Crushed Tomato: Crushed tomatoes are the perfect tomatoes for sauce. They have enough meat on them to still break down and thicken the sauce but they arent so thin like diced tomatoes where you need to thicken it with tomato paste. To shortcut the dish you can use pureed tomatoes.

White wine: Red wine is most often seen in red sauce but a dry white works just as well. A dry white wine offers a crisp, clean and lighter sauce. Red wine needs a little more time to break down so the sauce doesn’t turn out boozy.

Spices: Dried spices are always welcome in ragu. I don’t even think you can add too much. My go to dried herbs are oregano, rosemary, and thyme. Finish the ragu with fresh herbs like basil and flat leaf parsley.

TIPS & TRICKS FOR THE BEST ITALIAN SAUSAGE & MUSHROOM RIGATONI

 fresh or dried herbs: for this quick cook pasta dish fresh herbs are always welcome. fresh herbs have about 1 hour of cook time before the flavor is simmered away. so quick cooking methods always work great with them. dried herbs have  a longer cook time so they make a great addition for that long simmered feel, use a combination of both to add depth to any dish.

finishing the pasta: cooking the pasta to aldente leaves it with a little chew. cook the pasta to al dente then finish the pasta in sauce. finishing  the pasta in sauce will allow for the sauce to be absorbed into the pasta noodles. making it a more flavorful dish.

cooking  the Italian sausage: Italian sausage is pork so that means it has little to no fat. skip draining the meat if you’re exclusively using Italian sausage. the little fat it does render makes for a tremendous flavor to cook the vegetables in.

pasta water: adding pasta water to your pasta sauce help thicken the sauce. the salty water will help silken and smooth out any sauce. only add a little too much and you can drown your sauce.

SIMILAR INGREDIENTS:

  1. BRAISED BEEF + PARMESAN ORECCHIETTE PASTA
  2. STUFFED CHEESY SHELLS W/ GARDEN RAGU
  3. BRAISED PORK RAGU & PENNE

ENJOY THIS RECIPE WITH:

  1. SPRING SALAD + CARROT & SAFFLOWER VINAIGRETTE
  2. BAKED ZUCCHINI WEDGES + ROASTED TOMATO DIP
  3. GARDEN VEGETABLE RAGU

Italian Sausage & Mushroom Rigatoni

Italian Sausage & Mushroom Rigatoni
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INGREDIENTS

  • 10oz Rigatoni
  • 2Tb Olive Oil
  • 1lb Italian Sausage
  • 1 Carrot, minced
  • 1 Yellow Onion, minced
  • 8 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 10oz Mushroom, sliced
  • 28oz Crushed Tomato, canned
  • 2tsp Rosemary
  • 2tsp Oregano
  • 1tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
  • 2tsp Black Pepper
  • Salt
  • 1/4c Parmesan Cheese, grated

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Preheat a pan over medium high heat.
  • Add in olive oil and Italian sausage. Break up the sausage and cook till completely brown.
  • Once the sausage has browned add in carrots, yellow onions, and mushrooms. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add in white wine and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Add in garlic, crushed tomatoes, and season with herbs listed.
  • Cover and let simmer for 45 minutes -1 hour.
  • 15 minutes towards the end boil a pot of salted water and cook the pasta according to package instructions.
  • Adjust sauce for salt and pepper.
  • Remove 1/4c pasta water and add that to the sauce along with the cook pasta and grated parmesan. Remove from the heat.
  • Toss and let the pasta sit in the sauce for 5 minutes
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