Oh. Oops. Introductions first! Hello there Sew Crafty Angel readers! My name is Christie and I’m A Kitchen Hoor. You know the type. They’d rather be in a Williams Sonoma or Sur le Table than a DSW or Macy’s. That’s me! You can read about how I got the nick name here.
I’ve been in the kitchen cooking or baking ever since I can remember. Which isn’t saying much because my memory ain’t all that great, but there isn’t one that doesn’t involve food in some shape, way or form! So, when Angel had contributor sign ups, I was hoping I’d be a shoe-in for the “food” category! No pun intended. And, well I must have been because here I am, on her blog, chatting about food. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy! If you enjoy it a lot, feel free to stop by my blog to read some more.
Where was I? Sundays!! YES! We cook 6 nights a week, sometimes only 5 if we’re lazy on Saturdays. But Sundays? They’re ALL about the wholesomely delicious food that you CAN’T make during the week; the lasagna, the baked penne, the pot roast, the roasted chicken. You know, THOSE types of dishes. That’s when both of us get in our one butt kitchen (S says that because he thinks is small and only ONE of us can fit in there at a time. I disagree most times. *wink*) and whip up a delicious meal.
I think I meant for this to be more of a #MeatlessMonday meal, but since I planned it on Sunday, I threw in a package of sausages we had in the freezer. Because there always seems to be sausages in the freezer. I’m not sure how that happens, but I’m not going to question it!
For those of you who are new to my recipes, S has cholesterol issues, so I always prepare low fat meals for him and, for the most part, I benefit from them, too. So, yes, there are low fat and fat free ingredients listed, but if you’re not following that, then feel free to use the types of ingredients you’re used to. It’s a recipe, not a commandment!! Just sayin…
Funny thing happened while making this dish. I picked up a bottle of an Argentinian red wine. I’m not sure what type it was. I know it was from the Mendoza region, but that’s about it. It was a very dry, VERY dry red wine that I thought was rather tasty! Anyway. The sausages were nice and browned and I added the wine for deglazing (you can totally use a vegetable or chicken stock for this). S says to me, “The sausages are purple.” Sure enough! The wine had turned them purple!! I’ve added wine to sausages before and never seen anything like it!! It was funny. This is why the sausages look a little “off” in my photos. But let me assure you, they tasted FABULOUS!!
In fact, this whole dish tastes fabulous. It’s like a cross because a traditional baked penne and a lasagna. In all honesty, I had cottage cheese and ricotta that needed cooking. That’s how I come with a good chunk of my recipes. “What’s in the pantry, freezer, fridge that should be used?” And voila! A recipe is born. So, get in your kitchen and cook from your pantry, freezer or fridge and whip up a batch of this deliciously simple Sunday casserole!
Baked Pasta and Sausage with Tomato Cream Sauce
Recipe by A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures (@AKitchenHoor)
- 12 ounces short pasta (penne, cavatapi, shells)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 12 ounces Italian sausage
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 1/2 cup fat free half and half
- 1/2 cup 2% ricotta cheese
- 1 cup fat free cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup low fat Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup fat free mozzarella cheese
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1/2 cup egg substitute
- 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 cup fat free mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Heat a large skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and swirl to coat. Sauté garlic 2 to 3 minutes or until it becomes fragrant. Using kitchen shears or scissors cut the sausages into slices into the pan and cook until browned.
- Add the wine to deglaze the pan. Simmer 2 to 3 minutes or until the wine has reduced by half. Add the marinara sauce and simmer.
- While the sausages are simmering, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine next 8 ingredients (half and half through crushed red pepper) and stir well to combine.
- Add the pasta and stir to combine. Carefully add the sausage and sauce and fold the mixture until the sauce is incorporated with the cheese mixture and it is a pale red color.
- Pour the mixture into a 9 x 13 casserole dish coated with cooking spray. Top with remaining mozzarella cheese and bake, uncovered, 20 to 25 minutes.
- Cool slightly before serving.