Jack is Cooking Baked Rigatoni with Herondale Farm Sausage

Well Hello Internet!
I don’t normally like to eat pasta dishes with tomato sauce, but there are a few that i really like.  Normally i find that i like tomato sauces if they involve meat, like sausage or ground beef and also ricotta cheese.  So i made this delicious pasta dish which i suppose could be described as a baked ziti… but i don’t want to call it that as that conjures up many images of exactly what i don’t like.  
So this i call a Baked Rigatoni with lots of delicious sausage and Ricotta Cheese, to add a bit of greens i also included some kale, you know… just because.
Anyway, here is the recipe:
Olive Oil 
4 Cloves Garlic (diced)
1 Onion (diced)
1 pound Herondale Farm Sweet Italian Sausage (removed from the casings)
1 bunch Kale (finely chopped)
2 14 oz cans of diced tomato
1 cup water
1 teaspoon Herbs de Provence
salt and pepper
1 lb of Rigatoni
1 lb of fresh Ricotta
2/4 lb fresh mozzarella
a handful of Parmesan cheese 
1. Preheat the Oven to 400°.  Meanwhile heat some olive oil in a pan on the stove.  Add the Garlic and Onion, and cook until slightly translucent.  Mix in the ground sausage and cook until it is nicely browned.  Once the sausage is browned, add the kale and toss to mix.  The kale will get nicely cooked throughout this, so cook it until it has only just begun to wilt.

2.  Add the diced tomato, the water, and the herbs de provence.  Season with Salt and pepper and bring it to a boil.  
3.  While this sauce is simmering, cook the pasta.  Cook it until it is very Al Dente, so its still just a little bit hard in the middle.  Its going to cook a lot longer in the oven, so the pasta will absorb the sauce and become nice and soft.  When the rigatoni is cooked add it into the sauce and mix it all together.

4. Put everything into a Baking dish, or as i have done – a trusty creuset.  Take the Ricotta cheese and add spoonfuls to the mix.  The trick here is not to mix it in entirely, but to rather leave pockets.  so take spoonfuls of it, and plunge it down, repeating over and over until you have injected all these bubbles of ricotta cheese.  Keep some leftover and put it all over the top.

5.  Top everything with the mozzarella cheese, and sprinkle the parmesan cheese over along with some salt and pepper.

6.  Place the dish in the oven, and bake for approximately 40 minutes, or until the cheese on top is starting to turn golden.

7.  Let the whole dish sit for a few minutes so the cheese solidifies, and gains a nice crust on top, and serve!

mmmm mmmm delicious!

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