Friday night is usually pizza night, but tonight we’re going with a simple penne pasta covered in roasted cherry tomatoes, onions, and Italian sausage. Sometimes I feel like enjoying an easy pasta dinner that yields big flavor for little effort. Roasting some veggies and sausage in the oven is a great fix for that. Roasting cherry tomatoes is just about the easiest way to coax out a lot of flavor while still preserving their shape. I added in
some a lot of fresh garlic, sliced, rather than minced, because the long roasting brings out the sweetness in the garlic. Plus it’s nice to get substantial bites of garlic along with the meaty tomatoes rather than little bits that fade away. I’ve also found that roasting Italian sausage is a winning method too, since you don’t have to worry about flipping or undercooking. And all those flavorful juices coat the veggies while they’re in the oven. Top it all of with some fresh basil and green onion- I don’t mind tonight being pasta night!
Thinly slice up 1 onion and some garlic. I’m a garlic-holic so I threw in about 6. Set aside.
Toss the cherry tomatoes, onions, garlic, and olive oil together. Season to your taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to a roasting pan.
Mix in the sausage and roast until the sausage and vegetables are slightly browned, 35-45 minutes.
When the veggies and sausage are nearly done, bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Stirring occasionally, pour in pasta and cook according to package directions, about 10-12 minutes. Before draining the pasta, add a ladleful of pasta water to the roasting pan. This will break up any caramelized bits on the bottom of the pan.
While pasta is cooking, roll the basil leaves into a tight cylinder, and slice as thinly as possible. Slice up the green onions as well.
Drain the pasta and return to the pot. Add in the roasted sausages, garlic, onions, and tomatoes, scraping along every bit of flavor from the pan. Toss in basil leaves and green onions and stir. Taste as you go with this recipe. The pasta should be cooked to your liking, as well as the roasted vegetables. Go by the way you sense the flavor, smells and taste.