MARCH MADNESS

vodka sauce

Let’s see who is going to make it to the dance.  I plan on watching a couple of games today.  Pasta is a go-to dish for me.  Today I am fixing Pasta with a Creamy Vodka Sauce, Cesar Salad, Garlic Bread, Pink Champagne and Bread Pudding for dessert.

PASTA WITH CREAMY VODKA SAUCE

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, 1/2 tablespoons salted butter, 3 garlic cloves, minced, 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper,  1/2 cup finely chopped red thinly onion, 1 1/4 cup vodka, 1 cup chicken stock, 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream, 1 (32 oz.) can crushed tomatoes, 1 pound uncooked fettuccine pasta, 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil, 1/8 cup chopped fresh parsley, 1 1/2 pounds bulk sweet Italian sausage, 2 tablespoons lemon zest, 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for garnish.

Cook the pasta according to the package directions, drain, reserve about 3 tablespoons of the pasta water, set aside and keep warm.  In a heavy pot add the olive oil and the sausage cook until browned, make sure all the pink is gone, remove from skillet and set aside. Add the butter, onions, garlic, and red pepper. to the skillet. Saute until the onions are soft and clear. Taste.  Add about 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and crush red pepper mix well. Add the crushed tomatoes, cook until the consistency of the sauce thickens. Add the vodka and about 3 tablespoons of the pasta water bring to a rapid boil for about 2-minutes.  Reduce to a simmer and cook for another 3-minutes or until the sauce is reduced by half.  Add the cream, cook for another 5-minutes. Remove from the stove, add the sausage, basil, parsley, lemon zest, half the cheese, and pasta toss.  Pour into a serving bowl garnish with the rest of the cheese.

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