Thanks to our friends, Chase and Rachel, we were able to spend a weekend with them at Table Rock State Park. We had a blast up there and loved being in the mountains again! While we were there, I had the privilege of cooking Chase’s birthday dinner – here’s the recipe we chose – it’s Chris’ favorite. Ironically, the recipe came from a cookbook that Rachel gave me at a bridal shower almost 5 years ago!
1 lb. ground italian sausage (I like Bob Evans the best – yeah, WV! )
1 (14 oz.) can of beef broth
1 can of tomato paste
1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream
1 tsp of crushed fennel seed (this is the “secret” ingredient – it’s worth buying it and believe me, you’ll make this recipe enough times to make it worth the search in the spice aisle!)
1 large bag of your choice of tortellini or stuffed ravioli (I like the three cheese one the best with this recipe)
Boil your water for the pasta. Add a little olive oil and salt for taste. Cook the pasta according to the directions – but be careful not to overcook it or it will be watery!
Brown the sausage and drain off MOST of the drippings in a large skillet. (I like to save these for flavor later in my scrambled eggs. . . it’s a great budget saver if you don’t have actual sausage, and just want the breakfast flavor!) Keep some of the fat in the skillet. Add the beef broth, tomato paste, heavy cream and the fennel seed. Let it simmer on low heat until it’s cooked through.
And that’s it! It takes about 15 minutes to cook – and if you can cook the pasta and sauce at the same time, and put some garlic bread in the oven before all that, and have a salad in the fridge ready to go – you can have dinner on the table in 15 minute!
Beat that, Rachel Ray!