- Portion size 8 servings
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 onions sliced
- 1 sweet red pepper chopped
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds crushed
- 1 lb hot Italian sausage
- 2 jars (700 ml) tomato-basil pasta sauce
- 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
- 5 cups rigatoni pasta
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 400°C (200°C).
In Dutch oven or large heavy skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; cook onions, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add red pepper, garlic and fennel seeds; reduce heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes or until onions are very soft and golden. Transfer to bowl.
Cut sausage into 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks; add to pan and brown well on all sides, about 8 minutes. Drain off fat. Stir in pasta sauce and vinegar. Return vegetable mixture to pan; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta for about 8 minutes or until tender but firm. Drain, reserving 1 cup (250 mL) of the cooking water. Return pasta to pot; add sauce and reserved cooking water.
Combine mozzarella and Parmesan cheese; set 1 cup (250 mL) aside. Stir remaining cheese into pasta mixture. Pour into 13- x 9-inch (3 L) glass baking dish, pressing pasta to submerge. Sprinkle with reserved cheese and parsley.
Bake, covered, in oven for 30 to 45 minutes; uncover and continue for another 15 minutes or until golden.
(Make ahead: Let cool in refrigerator; cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Or overwrap with heavy-duty foil and freeze for up to 2 weeks; thaw in refrigerator for 48 hours.)