Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Vodka Cream Pasta with Sausage, Shrimp and Mushrooms


I have always loved a good vodka sauce ever since I had it for the first time at a small little Italian family-style restaurant in Atlanta though I have never found a recipe that came close to that incredible meal so many years ago.  Finally I found it on a blog called the Smitten Kitchen which is another of my favorite food blogs.  I made some adjustments so this is actually a recipe adapted from what I found on the Smitten Kitchen (the name of that recipe was "You Won't Be Single Long Vodka Cream Pasta" -- hysterical) which was adapted from a Rachel Ray recipe.  That is one of my favorite parts about cooking...everyone can make their own adjustments to any recipe to make it fit their preferences.  This was an awesome dish that I will definitely be making again soon!!

Vodka Cream Pasta with Sausage, Shrimp and Mushrooms

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, once around the pan in a slow stream
1 tablespoon butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 shallots, minced
1 package baby bella mushrooms, sliced
1 package sausage with basil and sundried tomatoes, sauteed in a little bit of beer (or maybe a lot of beer)
1 cup vodka
1 cup chicken stock
1 can crushed tomatoes (32 ounces)
Coarse salt and pepper
1 tablespoon sugar
16 ounces pasta, such as penne rigate
1/2 cup heavy cream
20 leaves fresh basil, shredded or torn
 
Heat a large skillet over moderate heat. Add oil, butter, garlic, mushrooms and shallots. Gently saute shallots for 3 to 5 minutes to develop their sweetness. 
 
Add vodka to the pan, 3 turns around the pan in a steady stream will equal about 1 cup. 

Reduce vodka by half, this will take 2 or 3 minutes. Add chicken stock, tomatoes. 
 
To any tomato sauce I like to add about a tablespoon of sugar to cut the acidity of the tomatoes.
 
Bring sauce to a bubble and reduce heat to simmer. Season with salt and pepper. In  a separate pan saute the sausage in a about a half inch of beer and let simmer while you get everything else coked, turning occasionally.  
 
If you would like to add shrimp just saute it in a separate pan with some garlic, shallots and butter and toss with the pasta.


While sauce simmers, cook pasta in salted boiling water until cooked to al dente (with a bite to it). Stir cream into sauce. 
 
When sauce returns to a bubble, remove it from heat. Drain pasta. 
Toss hot pasta with sauce and basil leaves.

Dump remaining ingredients into the pasta and mix to coat.  
Top with more fresh basil and Parmesan cheese.



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1 comment:

  1. First, I LOVE the new background color! I had the absolute delight of eating some of your leftovers tonight and it was divine! I adore the fact that thanks to your blog, I can see how it came to be since I missed the making of it in person. DE-LISH! -Amber PS Thank you, and I love you. :o)

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