Livened up with hot sausage under a golden cheese topping, this dish makes a zesty winter warm-up.
- Portion size 8 servings
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 onions sliced
- 1 sweet red pepper chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds crushed
- 1 lb hot Italian sausage
- 2 jars tomato-basil pasta sauce
- 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
- 12 oz rigatoni pasta (about 5 cups/1.25 L)
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
In Dutch oven or large deep skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; cook onions, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
Add red pepper, garlic and fennel seeds; cook over medium heat for 10 minutes or until onions are very soft and golden. Transfer to bowl.
Remove casings from sausage; breaking up meat, add to skillet. Cook over medium-high heat, breaking up with spoon, for about 8 minutes or until browned; drain off any fat.
Stir in pasta sauce and vinegar. Return vegetable mixture to pan; simmer over medium-low heat 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) cooking water. Return pasta to pot; add sauce and reserved water.
Combine mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses; set 1 cup (250 mL) aside. Stir remaining cheese into pasta mixture. Pour into 13- x 9-inch (3 L) baking dish, pressing pasta to submerge. Sprinkle with reserved cheese and parsley. (Make-ahead: Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day or wrap in heavy-duty foil and freeze for up to 2 weeks; thaw in refrigerator for 48 hours. Cover and bake in 400°F/200°C oven for 30 to 45 minutes; uncover and continue with recipe.)
Bake in 400°F (200°C) oven for 15 minutes or until golden.
Nutritional facts <b>Per each of 8 servings:</b> about
- Sodium 1484 mg
- Protein 26 g
- Calories 582.0
- Total fat 24 g
- Cholesterol 54 mg
- Saturated fat 9 g
- Total carbohydrate 66 g
- Iron 22.0
- Folate 44.0
- Calcium 26.0
- Vitamin A 36.0
- Vitamin C 78.0