So last week was just one of those weeks. I was sick and we just didn’t eat off our meal plan as I like to do. By the time Friday came around, I was feeling a little better physically but I just wasn’t feeling up to eating something rich and cheesy like a calzone for dinner. However, we had plans to run a local 5K the next morning so I wanted something light, healthy, and filling. This dish I threw together in a few minutes did just the trick! It is definitely one I will be making again, unlike some of my past pasta creations which were just so-so.
This penne pasta dish had just the right combination of savory sausage, flavorful veggies, and complimentary seasonings. I loved how the sweetness of the honey was just barely noticeable but made it’s presence known. However, my favorite part of this dish was the sundried tomatoes. They really added a lot to the pasta–a little saltiness, a little tang, and a dash of tomato flavor to really bring the sauce together… so don’t skimp on them! I bet fresh tomatoes and a little tomato paste would be delicious too, and would give the dish a slightly different flavor palate.
Sausage Pepper Penne
by me 🙂
- 1 gigantic clove garlic, minced [or 2 smaller cloves]
- 3/4 cup onion, chopped
- 1 green pepper, chopped
- 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes in oil, chopped
- 2 Italian turkey sausages, chopped [I used 1 sweet and 1 spicy, and mine were not precooked but you probably could substitute if that’s what you had on hand.]
- 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon honey
- 1 1/2 cups miniature penne pasta (uncooked)
- fresh ground pepper
- olive oil
In a large saucepan, heat a dash of olive oil over medium-high heat. When hot, add garlic and onion and sauté for a few minutes until they are just beginning to brown and soften. Then add green pepper to the pan and cook for another two to three minutes until the green pepper is just beginning to soften. Turn heat down to medium and add chopped sausage into the pan. Let cook until sausage has browned, stirring every so often.
Meanwhile, bring water to boil in a large stock pot for your pasta. [Be sure to check out Lynne’s Kitchen Adventures for tips on the perfect way to cook pasta. It sounds elementary but it is not at all!]
Meanwhile, add sundried tomatoes to sausage mixture. Cover and simmer on low while pasta cooks. Cook pasta to al dente. Before draining pasta, reserve 1 cup of pasta water to thin out sauce if necessary. Drain and add penne to saucepan with sausage mixture. Stir in honey and mustard, and add salt and pepper to taste. Add up to 1 cup pasta water to thin out sauce–I used about 1/3 cup. Toss to combine and serve. Eat and enjoy!
This recipe yields about 3-4 servings. Ben had one large helping and a smaller helping, I had a medium-sized serving, and there was some leftover for lunch yesterday… so be sure to keep that in mind and alter to fit your needs.
Have you ever made an improv recipe that ended up being a favorite? If so, tell me about it!