Who doesn’t enjoy a bowl of pasta covered in a rich tomato sauce and then topped with parmesan? I seriously don’t think I know anyone who would turn down pasta, especially during the colder months. Pasta is a total comfort food for me, and honestly I don’t eat it very often because I do try to watch my carb intake, but every once in a while I get a horrible craving for Italian food. And I give into those cravings….. Italian food is probably my favorite cuisine. Lasagna, pizza, spaghetti, pesto, veal parmesan, I want it all.
My absolute favorite is anything with a good marinara sauce. I love it and will eat it by itself. Just give me a bowl of marinara sauce, maybe some meatballs or ground sausage, top with parmesan, and I’m a happy camper. When I do make pasta, my ratio of sauce to noodles is not very Italian. I definitely prefer the pasta to be drowning in sauce. I also like to use a lot of tomato paste. Most recipes seem to call for only a tablespoon or two of tomato paste. I finally just started using the whole little can because the leftovers would always get lost in the back of the fridge and then thrown away a month later. Anyone else have that problem or just me?
For the pasta, well, I spotted this pasta at the grocery store a while back, and it looked fancy, so I bought it. It’s called Italian Trottole pasta. Even the name sounds fancy, but it’s just a spiral, macaroni-type noodle. I impulse-bought it and when the pasta craving hit, I decided it’d go well with a puttanesca sauce. Pasta puttanesca is traditionally made with spaghetti noodles.
The thing I like about puttanesca sauce is that it’s loaded with veggies and fairly versatile. This recipe is pretty forgiving (always a plus), and you can be creative with it. You probably have most of the ingredients in your cupboards or pantry right now. To make pasta more of a healthy meal, I usually pair it with a salad so it’s not just a one-dish meal. There was leftover puttanesca sauce, so I used it with zoodles instead of pasta the second night, and it was still amazing. Enjoy!
- 1 lb Italian Pork Sausage
- 1 medium Onion chopped
- 1 medium Green Bell Pepper chopped
- 2-4 Garlic Cloves minced
- 1/2 cup Manzanilla Olives chopped + some of the liquid from the jar
- 1/2 cup Artichoke Hearts chopped + some of the liquid
- 28 oz can of Whole Tomatoes
- 6 oz can Tomato Paste
- 15 oz can Tomato Sauce
- 1 tsp oregano
- 2 tsp dried parsley
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes 1/4 tsp if you're not a fan of some heat
- 1/2 tsp ground pepper
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese for topping
- 8 oz pasta - Italian Trottole or similar type of pasta
Brown sausage over medium heat
Once sausage is browned, add chopped onion and green pepper. When the onion and pepper start to soften, about 5 minutes or so, add in the garlic, manzanilla olives, and artichoke hearts.
Stir in some of the juice from the manzanilla olives and artichoke hearts for extra brininess, if that's your thing (it's definitely mine).
Pour in the canned whole tomatoes, smashing the tomatoes with your spoon or spatula.
Add in the tomato sauce and tomato pasta.
Mix in the seasonings - oregano, parsley, red pepper, and black pepper.
Let puttanesca sauce simmer for ~10-15 minutes to allow flavors to blend together.
While the sauce simmers, cook pasta according to directions on the package.
To serve, dish pasta into bowls and cover generously with puttanesca sauce. Top with parmesan.