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QUICK FIX

Pasta in Pink

January 28, 1998|JANET McCRACKEN | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Pasta is usually served as a first course in Italy, but when a dish is as hearty as this one, it deserves to be the main attraction. It's a complete meal when served with a salad and your favorite crusty bread.

Most supermarkets offer quite a selection of sausages, so it's up to you whether you use hot or mild, turkey or pork. And, to make the dish more fun to eat--at least for the younger ones at your table--choose a pasta with an interesting shape.

Menu (30 MINUTES OR LESS)

Pasta With Sausage and Peas in Pink Sauce

Mixed Green Salad with Vinaigrette

Warm Crusty Bread

PASTA WITH SAUSAGE AND PEAS IN PINK SAUCE

Salt

1 (27-ounce) can tomato puree

1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 (4-inch) sprigs basil, stems and leaves

1 pound Italian sausage

1 pound dried pasta (bow ties, cartwheels or shells)

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

3/4 cup frozen peas

Pepper

Pinch sugar, optional

Grated Parmesan cheese

Bring 16 cups salted water to boil in large pot over high heat.

Bring tomato puree, diced tomatoes, garlic and basil to boil in saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until ready to serve.

Remove sausage from casing. Saute in large skillet over medium-high heat, breaking into pieces with back of spoon, until completely cooked and no longer pink, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain off fat.

When water comes to boil, add pasta and cook 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions, depending on shape of pasta. When pasta has about 2 more minutes to cook, add cream, peas and sausage to tomato mixture. Remove basil. Season with salt, pepper and sugar to taste.

Drain pasta. Add sauce and toss to mix. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese.

4 servings. Each serving:

930 calories; 1,642 mg sodium; 106 mg cholesterol; 40 grams fat; 113 grams carbohydrates; 32 grams protein; 3.09 grams fiber.

Ingredients

Shopping List

1 bunch basil

1 loaf Italian bread

1/2 pint heavy whipping cream

1 (7-ounce) bag mixed salad greens

1 pound dried pasta (bow ties, cartwheels or shells)

1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas

1 (27-ounce) can tomato puree

1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes

1 pound Italian sausage

Staples

Parmesan cheese

Garlic

Pepper

Salt

Sugar

Vinaigrette dressing

Countdown:

30 minutes before: Put water on to boil for pasta. Begin making sauce.

25 minutes before: Begin cooking sausages.

15 minutes before: Put salad greens in bowl.

12 minutes before: Add pasta to boiling water. Begin warming bread.

5 minutes before: Finish sauce.

3 minutes before: Drain pasta and toss with sauce. Toss salad with vinaigrette.

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