Spicy Italian Sausage Rigatoni with Vodka Sauce
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
1 lb spicy pork Italian sausage (recommended New York Style Sausage Company brand)
1 lb spinach, washed, cut into 1-inch lengthwise
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 onion, chopped
A box of Italian brown mushroom (about 15 – 20), sliced
1 can (24oz) vodka sauce (recommended Classico)
1 tsp olive oil
1 bag (16oz) rigatoni or penne or mixed
freshly ground pepper
sunflower seeds (optional)
basil leaves (optional)
Heat a pan on medium-high heat. Add Italian sausage. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until done. Set it aside on a plate and reserve the oil in pan.
Add garlic and onion. Cook for about 3 minutes, or onion turn lightly brown. Add mushroom. Mix and stir frequently to cook until tender. Add vodka sauce and sausage. Combine well. Turn heat to high and cook till sauce boils. Then, simmer for another 10 minutes. Stir frequently to avoid sticking.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Then, turn off heat and add spinach. Stir and drain immediately. Run cold water through spinach to stop the cooking process. Set aside.
In the same pot, fill water 3/4 of the way. Bring to a boil. Add oil and pinch of salt. Throw in rigatoni and cook for about 8 – 10 minutes, for al dente or desired texture. Drain and give it a stir.
Add cooked rigatoni and spinach to sauce. Mix and combine well. Sprinkle desired amount of Parmigiano-Reggiano, freshly ground pepper and sunflower seeds. Serve on plate. Garnish with basil leaves if desire.