Thursday, March 23, 2017

Sausage & Pepper Pasta

Sausage & Pepper Pasta

This recipe calls for diced canned tomatoes; instead, I opted to use this jarred marinara sauce that I found at Sam's Club.

It was the first day of Spring on Monday and we went snow skiing.  We have a great place to ski less than two hours from our home.  The ski area is called Monarch Mountain and it's on the Continental Divide.  Since my dad was on the ski patrol, I skied a lot as a kid, but I've only been snow skiing four times in the past 30 years.  It sure is a treat to go.  On our way home, we stopped for amazing burgers and fries at a place in Salida, Colorado.  The restaurant is called "50 Burger" (it is right on Highway 50).  It's not your typical burger joint... we are talking gourmet burgers all the way.  I had a salmon burger with avocado, chipotle mayo, lettuce, and tomato, all on a challah bun.  Good stuff.  I did not even notice what my husband ordered; I was too busy eating.  When we got home, we sure were tired.  My husband was hungry again and he suggested we go out to pizza. I suggested I make him some pasta since I had shopped for ingredients to try out a new recipe for him.  I found this recipe on the Internet; the recipe source is listed below.

I snapped a few photos from our skiing adventure. As you can tell, the weather was just beautiful!

I made a few changes to the recipe. The recipe indicates you can make this meal in just one pot. I was in a hurry so I opted to use two pots; in one pot I cooked the pasta and in the second pot I browned the sausage and then also simmered the sausage, peppers, onions, and tomato sauce.  Also, the recipe calls for canned diced tomatoes; instead I used a jar of marinara sauce.  Since I added flavorful sauce in place of unseasoned diced tomatoes, I did not use all the spices called for in the recipe. Finally, the recipe calls for three hot Italian sausages and three sweet Italian sausages. I opted to use one package of Johnsonville brand Hot Italian sausage links (5 sausages in one package).

After making this dish and after getting my husband's opinion, next time I make this dish I will use less pasta (about 3/4 pound or a little less).  The dish just seemed quite heavy on pasta and there was not a lot of sauce.  Despite the pasta/sauce ratio being a little off, my husband gave this dish two thumbs up especially after being so hungry after hitting the slopes.  He's been gobbling up the leftovers too. 



Servings: 4-5
1 pound any short pasta (I used mini bowties, use less than 1 pound of pasta if you like more sauce)
1 tablespoon olive oil (I used less)
3 hot Italian sausages plus 3 sweet Italian sausages (I used Johnsonville Hot Italian Sausage, 5 links)
1 red bell pepper, large diced 
1 green bell pepper, large diced (I used an orange pepper in place of the green)
1 yellow bell pepper, large diced 
½ white onion, sliced
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
28 ounces can diced tomato (I used a 24 ounce jar of marinara sauce; see photo above)
1 teaspoon oregano (I just used a pinch)
1 teaspoon salt (I just used a pinch)
1 teaspoon black ground pepper (I just used a pinch)


1. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil, add a generous amount of salt, and cook pasta 2 minutes less than the package instructions. 
2. Strain pasta and set aside. Toss with a small amount of oil to prevent sticking
3. In the same pot, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil and fry sausages, working in batches as needed, until deeply browned on all sides. 
4. Remove sausages, slice in ¾-inch rings, and set aside.
5. Sauté all of the bell peppers, onion, and garlic for about 2 minutes.
6. Add the canned tomatoes (or marinara sauce) all of the spices, and the sausage slices to the pot (see notes above). 
7. Simmer about 10 minutes.
8. Add the pasta back to the pot and stir gently until all the ingredients are coated in the sauce. Continue simmering until pasta is al dente.
9. Serve with grated parmesan.

Here is the recipe source:

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