When we were kids, my mom would often make a very large amount of pasta sauce. When I say large, I mean LARGE! My brothers were swimmers and very good ones at that. Carbo-loading before big meets was a must. The vessel my mom used for the pasta was a roasting pan that she set over two burners on the stove. There was no real recipe. She essentially used jarred sauce and, as she put it, “doctored” it. I have not recreated her recipe exactly here. But this recipe is definitely in the spirit of her sauce.
Three Cheese and Sausage Rigatoni
1-24 oz jar of prepared pasta sauce. I used Wegman’s Parmesan and Romano sauce
1 1/2 lbs Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage, cut in chunks
2-3 cloves crushed garlic
1/2 onion, chopped
2 tsp Italian herbs
Fresh mozzarella, cut into dainty little cubes
1 lb rigatoni, cooked
1. Saute the garlic and onion in the olive oil until the onions are translucent.
2. Add the sausage and cook until done, about 10-15 minutes.
3. Stir in the sauce and herbs. Heat through.
4. Did you cook your Rigatoni? If not, please turn the sauce to low and do so. If you did, gently combine the noodles and sauce. I made my sauce in my brand new cast iron pan, so I put the noodles in there.
5. Add the mozzarella. I just randomly plopped the pieces around the pan. I wanted to avoid too much stirring so the pasta didn’t break. Those big noodles sure are delicate!
6. Heat for five minutes until the mozzarella has melted.
7. Serve topped with shredded parmesan.
I don’t make pasta with red sauce very often because it isn’t loved by all. But this was loved by all. It was a very hearty dinner. I was quite stuffed! I think my mom would have approved of my creation. I did not make enough for a family of 96 like she always did, but there are plenty of leftovers.