I am so delighted that warmer weather is here. It means that my family and I will be spending more time dining al fresco. It’s so nice to get out of the house and to enjoy being outside. In my quest to combine the delicious flavors of grilled foods with comfort food, I married the two in a dish that I refer to as Italian Sausage Bake. I am going to tell you how I made it – without a recipe. Feel free to take your own liberties when cooking – make the dish your own.
To make the Italian Sausage Bake, start with your favorite sausage and grill it. While it is cooking, prepare some pasta – you want to cook it until it is al dente.
Doesn’t the sausage look beautiful? Let it cool for a couple of minutes and then cut it into 1/2 inch slices.
Next, drain your pasta and return it to the pot. Add the Mozzarella & Parmesan Cheese Sausage, a jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce (tomato & basil is a good flavor), and 3 basil leaves that have been cut using a chiffonade technique.
To the pot, add some shredded mozzarella cheese. (I used fresh mozzarella and found it to be too cheesy and clumpy. The shredded should create better results.) Pour the pasta into your favorite casserole dish and bake for about 20 minutes.
- 1 - 12 ounce package sausage
- 3 cups pasta, uncooked (I used Conchiglie)
- 8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 - 24 ounce jar tomato & basil spaghetti sauce
- 3 fresh basil leaves
- Boil pasta according to directions.
- Meanwhile, grill sausage over medium heat for 6 - 8 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes.
- Drain pasta.
- Cut sausage into 1/2-inch thick slices. Add to pasta in pan.
- Layer basil and roll lengthwise. Cut into thin strips (chiffonade).
- Pour spaghetti sauce on top of sausage and pasta. Add basil strips and cheese and stir.
- Pour pasta into casserole dish that has been lightly coated with nonstick spray.
- Bake at 400 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.
Isn’t that simple? And it is delicious, too!