Baked Pasta with Sausage, Tomato, and Cheese
1 (1-pound) package uncooked ziti (short tube-shaped pasta)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 pound hot turkey Italian sausage links (I used pork Italian Sausages)
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 (14.5-ounce) cans petite-diced tomatoes, undrained
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Cooking spray (I used butter)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded fresh mozzarella cheese
1 cup (4 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain the pasta, and set aside.
3. (I added 1 tbsp of olive oil to the pan.) Remove casings from sausage. Cook sausage, onion, and garlic in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Add the tomato paste, salt, pepper, and tomatoes, and bring to a boil.
4. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes (I simmered my sauce for 25 minutes), stirring occasionally.
5. Combine cooked pasta, sausage mixture, and basil. Place half of the pasta mixture in a 4-quart casserole coated with cooking spray or butter. Top with half of mozzarella and half of Parmesan. Repeat layers. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until bubbly.