We interrupt this sweet fest to bring you a savory, very tasty meal! No, there's not any a stick of butter and a cup of sugar in this recipe, but it is darn delicious so don't go yet! I've wanted to make Penne with Vodka sauce for years now. I once saw Rachael Ray make it on her show and she said this meal would turn your boyfriend into your husband. Well, I don't know about all that, but this recipe is a keeper and the men in your life will love it. I didn't plan it this way, but it might be a good dish to celebrate Father's Day too.
|Uncle Aaron and Hayden acting silly after nap time|
Y'all, I've been crazy busy lately. I know I say that a lot, but this little guy is wearing me out! He's such a little busy body and is into EVERYTHING these days. He grabs and must touch all things around him. He's crawling and rolling all over the place and exploring. He pulled the DVD player out of the entertainment center the other night and as of the 1st, when he turned 9 months old (how is that possible?!) he cut his first tooth and discovered his boy parts. heehee :-) See, I told you he's been busy! He's also been experiencing some separation anxiety and had been ultra clingy which makes night time tough because he's waking up several times a night looking for me, which results in a sleepy baby throughout the day....and a sleepy momma.
I have been cooking and baking, but haven't really been picking up my camera other than to take pictures of Hayden. I've made this vodka penne a few times now and it goes so fast there's never any leftovers. As you've guessed it, there is vodka in the sauce. I bought a small inexpensive bottle since it's not something I drink, but it's been the perfect size for this recipe. This recipe takes a basic marinara sauce and kicks it up with the addition of the vodka, which adds a smoky robust flavor to it. It's just so full of flavor but you don't really taste the strong aspect of the alcohol- it just blends so nicely. It's slightly spicy and garlicky and just so good. Have I mentioned that already?
Vodka Penne / Penne alla Vodkaadapted from Lidia Bastianich via Picky Cook
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- 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 1 12 oz can tomato sauce
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 6 - 8 garlic cloves - minced
- pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup vodka plus 2 tablespoons to put in at the end
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3/4 cup Parmesan
- 1 teaspoon all purpose seasoning ( I used Emeril's Essence)
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 pound penne - cooked just shy of al dente
Add the 1/2 cup of vodka and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add cream, butter and Parmesan and stir to combine. Let simmer for a couple minutes. Add the final 2 tablespoons of vodka.
Drain the pasta and add to the sauce. Let cook in sauce for few minutes.
Serve with additional Parmesan.
Serves 6 - 8
The first time I made this recipe, I made it as written, and then the times after that I added cooked and crumbled Italian sausage to it. My husband is a big meat eater so he, of course, loved this addition. However you make it, it will be good. Serve it with a big crisp green salad, some crusty bread and pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy!