Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Angel Hair Pasta with Italian Sausage and Sun-dried Tomatoes

Monday was Robbie's birthday!!  We love celebrating birthdays in our house!  I always make a special dinner and dessert.  The birthday person gets to choose what I make.  And birthdays are one of the rare occasions that I am willing to go slightly out of my spending parameters.

For dinner, Robbie requested angel hair pasta with Italian sausage and sun-dried tomatoes.  This is a dish I used to make a lot (before kids #2, 3, and 4 came).  It is really easy and incredibly flavorful.

I buy sun-dried tomatoes from the bulk bins at WinCo.  You can also buy them in a pouch in the produce section or jarred in the canned tomato aisle.  

I prefer to use my scissors to cut dried tomatoes.

When I was making this a few years ago, I always used pine nuts.  However, pine nuts are currently over $14 per pound in the bulk bins at WinCo.  Consequently, I don't buy them anymore.  This time I used slivered almonds, which ended up tasting excellent!

I usually don't measure when making this dish.  I will attempt to give estimates in the recipe, but feel free to adjust the ratios to suit your taste.

Angel Hair Pasta with Italian Sausage and Sun-dried Tomatoes
1 lb. angel hair pasta
1 lb. bulk Italian sausage or links with casings removed
5 cloves garlic, smashed and roughly chopped
1/2 c. slivered almonds or pine nuts
1 1/2 c. sun-dried tomatoes, cut into bite-sized pieces
Fresh basil, torn
Olive oil
Parmesan cheese

Boil water and cook pasta according to package directions.  Meanwhile, brown Italian sausage over medium heat until cooked through.  If there are no drippings, drizzle a little olive oil into pan; add garlic and nuts.  

Saute until garlic is fragrant and nuts turn golden, stirring occasionally.  Stir in tomatoes and basil; cook just until warmed, 1-2 minutes.

Place pasta on plate; top with sausage and tomato mixture.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Served with Caesar salad and garlic bread.

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