Family meal alert! Or make ahead oven to table entertaining dish. This hearty pasta bake is studded with chunks of Italian sausage and mixed with a quick garlic-infused tomato and ricotta sauce. It’s then topped with mozzarella and parmesan. Yum! A great meal to freeze for week nights too.
500g Italian sausage, removed from casing
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large brown onion, finely chopped
4 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tsp fennel seeds
2 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
3 bunches spinach, washed and roughly chopped
2 400g cans diced tomatoes
500g rigatoni or fusilli pasta
250g Ricotta cheese
1/2 cup parmesan, coarsely grated
250g mozzarella, shredded
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 190C.
In a large heavy-bottomed fry pan, brown the sausage over medium-high heat until just cooked through, then remove to a layer of paper towels to drain using a slotted spoon.
Drain off the liquid, then return pan to the stove and heat the olive oil over medium heat. Cook the onions, garlic, fennel seeds and rosemary for about 2-3 minutes.
Add the spinach and tomatoes, bring to a simmer and cook until wilted, about 10 minutes, then remove from heat.
Meanwhile, boil the water for the pasta and cook according to directions. Drain and return to your pot.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, half the parmesan and half the mozzarella. Stir through tomato and spinach mix then season liberally.
Combine with the pasta, stir in sausage, then transfer to a large casserole dish.
Evenly sprinkle remaining mozzarella and parmesan over the top, then bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes or until top is golden brown and crisp.
Serve with a rocket and avocado salad.