Rigatoni is a medium-sized, tube-shaped pasta. It’s a great pasta to work with for two reasons: it’s thicker, and heartier, and it has little grooves running along the surface that really grab onto the sauce. Overall, it makes for a much more flavorful pasta. The biggest mistake people can make is to serve a marriage of boiled pasta and store-bought pasta sauce. Do NOT do this.  As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a fan of marinara sauces. Things like pesto and roasted garlic-tomato sauce have so much more flavor. Here is a delicious and hearty recipe that combines rigatoni, crisped slices of kielbasa, sweet red peppers, and a rich and creamy roasted garlic-tomato sauce. I’ve posted a recipe for this sauce before. Here is a great way to use it.

Ingredients (serves 4)

3 cups of rigatoni pasta

1  large red bell pepper (julienned)

1/2 lb pre-cooked kielbasa sausage (half a package) (thinly sliced)

1 recipe Roasted Garlic and Tomato Sauce

Recipe for Sauce Is Here: https://bigkidz.wordpress.com/2009/09/21/creamy-roasted-garlic-and-tomato-sauce/

Method:

Fill large pot with water about halfway and bring to boil on high temperature.  Follow roasted garlic-tomato sauce recipe above. Once water is boiling, season liberally with salt and drop in pasta. Cook for about 10 minutes, checking in between, or until pasta is al dente. Should be firm to the tooth. Once pasta is cooked, drain and set aside in colander with drizzle of olive oil to keep from sticking.

Cut peppers and slice sausage. In a large pot, cook red peppers with 1 tablespoon of olive oil for about five-ten minutes, until tender, then add sausage and cook until lightly browned and crisp. (Note: sausage is pre-cooked, but this gives it a nice coloring and flavor).  Once sausage is browned, add the cooked pasta and toss until well mixed. Sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of grated parmesan and mix again. Then add sauce, toss well, and sprinkle lightly with more parmesan and chopped fresh basil. Serve and enjoy!

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