Are you the type of person who only goes to baseball games for that huge Italian hoagie stuffed with sausage and peppers? We’re with you. This week, our chefs took the beloved dish from stadium fare to elegant weeknight dinner with a few delicious twists. First, they dropped the hoagie and replaced it with twisty gemelli pasta. Its nooks are perfect for clinging to silky roasted garlic tomato sauce studded with crispy bits of sausage. Peppers are roasted to bring out depth and sweetness, then thinly sliced and swirled in. Plus, there’s cheese both in the sauce and sprinkled on top. It’s safe to say this dish knocks it out of the park.
Produced in a facility that processes milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybean.
Sweet Italian Pork Sausage
Adjust rack to middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Wash and dry all produce. Halve bell pepper, then remove and discard core and stem. Thinly slice chili. Remove sausage from casings; discard casings.
Drizzle pepper halves with oil, salt, and pepper; place cut sides down on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Place whole garlic cloves on a 6-x-6-inch piece of aluminum foil and drizzle with oil, salt, and pepper. Cinch foil to make a closed pouch; place on baking sheet. Roast until pepper begins to char and garlic is soft, 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven.
While veggies roast, add gemelli to boiling water. Cook until al dente, 9-11 minutes. Reserve ¾ cup pasta water, then drain.
Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add sausage and cook, breaking up meat into pieces, until browned, 6-8 minutes. Pour out any excess fat from pan. If desired, stir in a pinch of chili; cook 15 seconds. Add tomato paste and ½ cup reserved pasta cooking water. Simmer until thickened, about 2 minutes. Turn off heat.
Transfer roasted bell pepper halves to a cutting board; thinly slice. Remove roasted garlic cloves from foil; transfer to cutting board and gently smash with a fork. Return pan with sauce to low heat. Add garlic and stir to combine. Stir in sliced bell pepper, pasta, sour cream, 2 TBSP butter, and half the Parmesan. (TIP: If sauce seems dry, stir in a splash of remaining reserved cooking water.) Season with salt and pepper.
Divide pasta between bowls. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan and, if desired, a pinch of remaining chili.