Okay, this is one of those recipes that you MUST try! It’s super good for a cold wintery night and MUCH less time consuming than your traditional lasagna. But you know how sometimes quicker equates to not as tasty? Well not in this case – it’s sooo yummy. The dollop of ricotta and parmesan cheese added at the end makes all the difference. The hearty noodles (I used whole wheat elbow pasta) and sausage make you feel like you’ve really had a meal – not just a light soup. Also, if you don’t want to buy basil just for this recipe, it’s just fine without it, but it’s a nice touch.
3 oz. elbow pasta (whole wheat is great!)
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. Italian sausage, casing removed
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 tbsp. tomato paste (by the way, if you hate to waste the rest of the can, freeze the leftovers in an ice cube tray)
6 c. chicken stock
1 (28-oz) can of fire roasted diced tomatoes
2 bay leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 c. fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
8 oz. Ricotta cheese
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Cook your elbow pasta in salted water, according to the package instructions. If you’re like me and hate cleaning more dishes than necessary, you might want to re-use the same pot for your soup. Heat your olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add Italian sausage and cook until browned, making sure to thoroughly crumble the sausage. Drain the excess fat and the add the garlic, onion, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring frequently, until your onions are translucent (2-3 min). Stir in tomato paste until well combined. Stir in chicken stock, diced tomatoes, and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes.
While your soup is simmering, stir together your ricotta mixture. When the 30 minutes of simmering is complete, add your noodles to the soup. Serve immediately with a heaping spoonful of the ricotta and sprinkle mozzarella and basil on top. Eat with a big chunk of tasty bread!
Recipe courtesy of Damn Delicious.
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