Cheap, Cheerful Supper: Rigatoni with Sausage
Today's offering is cheap, nutritious, and generally will make people happy--assuming they like to eat well and aren't veggie haters, that is. The one-dish, stove-top dinner combines low-fat turkey sausage, onions, mushrooms, and little green peas in a simple, creamy, cheesy sauce. A little extra dusting of Parmesan cheese adds extra nutty saltiness to the dish. All you'll need to complete the meal is a green salad and perhaps some crusty bread to catch any lingering sauce. This truly is a quick and easy dish that's comforting and low work for the cook--great for a weeknight or any night when cooking a fancy meal isn't on your wish list. As a bonus, the meal yields leftovers for tasty lunches later in the week.
Rigatoni with Sausage -- Serves 4+
16 ounces of link Italian turkey sausage, chopped into 1/2-inch rounds
8 ounces of sliced button mushrooms
1/2 cup of chopped onion
1 teaspoon of dried basil
8 ounces of rigatoni
3 1/2 cups of water
2 teaspoons of reduced sodium chicken "Better Than Bullion"
1 cup of light sour cream
1 cup of Italian blend cheese
1-2 cups of baby peas
1/4 cup of low-fat milk (optional)
1/4-1/3 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and spritz it with a little oil (or add 2-3 teaspoons of oil to the pan). Add the mushrooms and onions to the pan and saute them for 5-8 minutes until they soften. Add the turkey sausage and saute it with the veggies for 5-8 minutes or until it begins to brown a bit. Add the dried basil, the rigatoni, and the water to the pan and stir everything together. Bring the contents of the pan to a boil and stir in the "Better Than Bullion." Reduce the heat to a simmer and partially cover the pan. Let the pasta mixture cook until the pasta is tender and it has absorbed most of the water. You should have about a cup or so of water remaining in the pan. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the light sour cream and the Italian cheese until everything is coated and a light sauce forms. Stir in the peas and turn off the heat. If the mixture seems a little dry, you can stir in about 1/4 cup of low-fat milk to loosen the sauce a bit. Sprinkle on the Parmesan cheese and cover the pan for a few minutes before serving the pasta.