Pasta with Sausage in Vodka Sauce

Adapted from an Emerial Lagasse recipe, based on our tastes and what we had on hand.
 
Pasta with Sausage in Vodka Sauce
Shay Moore's adaptation
Ingredients
2 servings penne, farfalle or preferred pasta
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 pound Italian sausage (ground, or removed from the casing and crumbled)
1/2 large yellow onion 1/2 teaspoon salt
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
2 large cloves minced garlic
3 Tbsp tomato paste + 1/2 Cup warm water** OR 3/4 cup tomato sauce
3 Tbsp vodka
2 Tbsp heavy cream
1 Tbsp dried basil leaves
Grated parmesan, for garnish

Directions

Prepare pasta according to directions, drain, return to pan and set aside.
 
**If using tomato paste: Whisk tomato paste and water together to create a tomato sauce, set aside.

In large skillet heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up and stirring, until browned and all pink has disappeared ~5 minutes.

Add onions, salt, and red pepper flakes; cook, stirring, until the onions are softened and translucent,  ~5 minutes.

Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds to a minute.

Add tomato sauce and simmer to thicken, ~2-3 minutes.

Add vodka and reduce for a 2-3 minutes, then stir in the cream and cook until the sauce thickens, ~2 minutes.

Toss the pasta in the sauce to coat evenly and transfer to a pasta bowl for serving. Top with basil and cheese, serve with pride!

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