Sunday, February 10, 2008

Rigatoni Woodsman-Style

SP wanted something Italian for dinner tonight so he cracked open our copy of Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen in search of an idea. After much deliberation he settled on Rigatoni Woodsman-Style, which I served with some simple garlic bread:

I could tell this was going to be good while I was cooking it. I got out my big pan, the one my parents gave me for Christmas, and started sauteeing the onions and sausage. Then the mushrooms went in, followed by the tomatoes and peas. SP was sitting in the living room and every so often he'd say, "Man! That smells amazing." As I stirred together the rest of the sauce ingredients and gave it a taste I knew we had a winner. The sauce:

... is just fantastic. All the flavors from the various ingredients remained separate but also combined together to make one great bowl of pasta. And the garlic bread only added to our enjoyment of the meal since it was nice and garlicky and perfect for dipping in the sauce. SP is still talking about how tasty this meal was.

Rigatoni Woodsman-Style

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1/2 pound sweet Italian sausages, preferably without fennel seeds
1 pound assorted mushrooms, trimmed, cleaned and sliced thin
1 cup seeded and diced canned plum tomatoes, drained
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
1 cup freshly grated Pecorino or Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a wide, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, and cook, stirring until wilted, about 4 minutes. Crumble the sausage into the skillet and stir, breaking up the sausage into small pieces as you do, until the sausage is lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

Stir about half the mushrooms into the sausage mixture. Add the remaining mushrooms as those in the pan wilt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until all the mushrooms are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. If the mushrooms give off liquid, allow time for the juices to boil off before the mushrooms start to brown.

Pour the tomatoes into the skillet, stir in the peas, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat so the sauce is at a lively simmer, season lightly with salt and pepper, and cook a minute or two. Stir in the stock and bring to a boil. Cook until the sauce is lightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Pour in the cream and bring to a boil. Spoon the ricotta into the sauce and stir gently to mix.

If the skillet is large enough to accommodate the sauce and pasta, add the pasta to the sauce in the skillet. If not, drain the pasta, return it to the pot, and pour in the sauce. Bring the sauce and pasta to a boil, stirring gently to coat the pasta with sauce. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup grated cheese. Check the seasonings, adding salt and pepper if necessary.
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  1. Hi, I just came across your blog. I wanted to tell you how much I like your ideas, and the "foodography"/photography (somthing I'm really struggling with!) is very nice.

    I'm adding you to my feeds so I can come back and see what yumminess you've made!

  2. I just came across your blog too. :) This sounds SO good. Thanks and I'll be looking over the rest of your blog now.
    Susie in northern NY

  3. Angie - Welcome! :) Thank you so much for the compliments.

    Susue - Welcome! :) I hope you like what you see.

  4. cool! new fans! ;)

    this one went on my "to make" list about two seconds after I read it. YUM.

  5. Melissa - If I'd known this was going to be such a popular dish I would have taken a better picture! Of all the pictures I've taken recently this is one of my least favorite. Oh well. :)

    Let me know how it turns out!

  6. I don't think I've ever seen canned plum tomatoes at my store. How would regular tomatoes work do you think?

  7. Looks great! I love Lidia!

  8. day to day - Please tell me you have canned tomatoes in your supermarket! I can't imagine one without them. Any whole, peeled canned tomato will do. I'm sure you could even use diced, although you don't want the liquid they come in.

    foodiedani - Thanks! I love her, too. :)

  9. I sent this link to Jay and he wants me to make it. I have a big container of part-skim ricotta... how do you think that will work out in the recipe?

    I have almost all the ingredients in the house except the sausage and heavy cream. And if I root around in the chest freezer long enough I'm sure I can come up with some sweet Italian sausage!

    Keep up the good work, missy! I read all of your posts!

  10. I hate it when blogs make my mouth water, and I am home alone in the snow

    I live in Pa too....

    and I am going to be coming back to your blog to visit


  11. Erica - Hey! :) I think part-skim would be fine. Oooh...I'm jealous of your chest freezer. We keep talking about getting one to put in the garage.

    Kath - Hello fellow PA dweller! Welcome to my blog.

    I'm so glad so many people liked this post, but I'm really embarrassed now that I didn't manage to take a better photo. :)

  12. Hi

    I was wondering what kind of assorted mushrooms did you use in this dish.

  13. Jackie - this time I didn't use an assortment but in the past I've used oyster, crimini, and white button.


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