Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Baked Penne with Turkey Sausage, Mushrooms & Roasted Red Peppers

All this cold weather is like a proper northeast Ohio weather, and when the temps plummet and schools are closed, we fire up our ovens and bake something filling and hearty.  Williams-Sonoma had tempted me with an Instagram of this Baked Rigatoni with Fennel, Sausage & Pepperonata, and I vowed and drooled to make my own version.  Naturally I went with what I had on hand, which was no fennel and no pepperonata.  But I did have cremini mushrooms and a jar of roasted red peppers, so the following baked, ooey gooey goodness was born.  We'll be serving up some cremini/baby bella mushrooms in this week's Crop Share, so beat that winter chill with this dish this weekend.

Baked Penne with Turkey Sausage, Mushrooms & Roasted Red Peppers


12 oz penne
2 Tbsp olive oil (plus extra to grease baking dish)
1 Tbsp garlic, minced
1.25 lbs Hot Italian Turkey Sausage, casings removed and crumbled
1 pint mushrooms, sliced
1 cup red wine, plus an extra slosh for good measure (I used a pinot noir)
12 oz roasted red peppers, drained thoroughly
26 oz marinara sauce (I used Nature's Promise organic Garden Vegetable Sauce)
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
Pinch Kosher salt
1/2 cup plus 1 heaping spoonful more of Tofutti Better Than Ricotta (or regular part-skim ricotta), plus extra to crumble on top

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.  And use olive oil to grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.

Cook pasta to package directions.  In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat.  Add in garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Crumble in sausage and begin to brown.  Once sausage begins to brown, add in sliced mushrooms.  Once sausage is cooked through and mushrooms have also browned, deglaze skillet with red wine, scraping any lovely bits off the bottom of the pan.  Stir in drained red peppers and marinara sauce, season with black pepper and salt, cover skillet, and bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat to prevent burning.

After simmering for about 4-5 minutes, remove from heat and stir in ricotta of your choice.  Then pour over drained, cooked pasta and fold in to fully incorporate.  Pour into greased baking dish and dot top with additional crumbled ricotta.

Bake for 10 minutes until bubbly.  Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes to allow dish to set up.  Reheats fantastic, seems to get better with each subsequent day.

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