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One-Pot Pasta Dinner

I love me a one-pot dinner - a meal that can literally be prepared using just one cooking instrument (i.e. pot). Easy to clean, throw ingredients and let them do their thing - easy when you are in a hurry to cook, like I often am. For tonight's dinner, I had some tomatoes in the fridge, I had some Italian sausage to use, so I decided to throw it together and see how it turns out. I was delish, and my family devoured it all.

I took 4 spicy Italian sausages, uncooked, and cut them into sliced. These I threw into a large pot, with a little olive oil, and let cook until browned. Then remove them to a paper-towel lined plate. In the same pot, I added about a cup of chopped onion, let cook for a few minutes, then a few teaspoons of minced garlic.

After a few minutes, I added the following: the cooked sausage; 3 cups of chicken broth; 3/4 cup heavy cream; about a cup of halved cherry tomatoes; a teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon each of black pepper and red pepper flakes; and 8 ounces of uncooked pasta (tonight I used cavatelli). Bring to a boil, then cover, turn to low, and let simmer for about 20 minutes.

After the 20 minutes, I added 3/4 cups of Monterey Jack cheese and 3/4 cup of Parmesan cheese, stir, and let simmer for a few more minutes, allowing the cheese to melt and the sauce to thicken up a bit.

Before serving, I sprinkled dried basil leaves on the top. Call in the family and watch the whole thing disappear in minutes!

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