Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

April 8, 2009

So, I was wondering what to cook for dinner the other night. I looked into my cupboard and saw two half used packs of different pasta. I decided I should use that up! What else do I have around? Well, I also had half a rotisserie chicken. All I needed now was something to make a nice chicken pasta salad. A quick trip to the Kroger and I was home with some sun dried tomatoes, zucchini, and store brand salad dressing (sun dried tomato flavor). What a dish I can make with this!

I first boiled the assortment of pasta based on the recommended time on the pack. I cut up the zucchini and sun dried tomatoes to any size you like. After the pasta was done, I put it in a big pan and tossed in everything else. After about 15 minutes it was nice and tender. I served it that way, and LOVED it! Fast, easy, and cheap.



I saw this recipe on Running With Tweezers and kept meaning to try it. I finally got the chance to the other night and was very happy.

Sausage and Broccoli Pasta – serves 4 as medium sized entree portions

  • 1 lb. bulk roll Italian sausage or link style, removed from casings
  • 1 16 oz. box penne or shell shaped pasta
  • 12 oz.  fresh broccoli – rinsed, dried and cut into florets
  • 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon to use for zest
  • 1 tsp. dried red chili flakes
  • fresh ground salt and pepper, to taste
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional

– Fill large pasta pot with water and heat until water is at rolling boil. Add pasta to water and cook according to product directions. About 3 minutes before pasta is done, add the broccoli florets. They will blanche quickly in the pasta water. When pasta is cooked, drain and set aside.
– While pasta is cooking, crumble sausage in a large skillet into large chunks and begin to brown. Don’t break the pieces up too small or they will disintegrate. Let them brown and caramelize in the pan. When thoroughly browned and cooked through, DO NOT DRAIN THE FAT. This is your sauce.
– Pour cooked and drained pasta & broccoli back into the pasta pot and add the sausage, including the oil and such at the bottom of the skillet. Drizzle the mixture with the teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil and mix thoroughly. If the pasta is too dry for your liking, add olive oil as desired. Sprinkle red chili flakes on pasta. Zest lemon over pasta and add salt and pepper to taste then mix all the ingredients together one last time. Grate Parmesan over the pasta before serving. Serve immediately.

I learned a couple things with this recipe. What is a floret? I found out quickly at Kroger that a broccoli floret is just the top of the broccoli. The good thing is you can just buy florets and not have to cut them yourself. This is a nice easy recipe. I highly recommend giving this a try! Here is the price breakdown…

Pasta – $0.88

Lemon – $0.69

Broccoli florets – $1.54

Sausage – $2.00

Total cost – $5.11

Here is everything cooking…

Here is the final dish…