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Italian Sausage Pasta with Cherry Tomatoes (30 Minute Dinner!)

Serves 4-6     adjust servings

This 30 minute weeknight meal comes together so easy! Italian Sausage Pasta with Cherry tomatoes is perfect for using up those summer vegetables coming from your garden! Swap the veggies for whatever you have on hand. It's absolutely delicious; who can say no to sausage and pasta?

Ingredients

  • water and 1/2 tablespoon salt, for pasta
  • 3 cups pasta (about 9 ounces), any kind (I used cavatappi)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound Italian sausage links
  • 1-2 teaspoons oil
  • 1 cup good quality beef broth
  • 2 medium yellow summer squash
  • 2 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped and divided
  • 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
  • more fresh basil, to garnish

Instructions

  1. Bring a medium pot of water to boil. Add 1/2 tablespoon salt (it should taste like the ocean). When it boils, add the pasta and stir occasionally until al dente (check the pasta package instructions).
  2. When the pasta is al dente, drain and return to the pot. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, stir, and set aside (keep warm by covering with lid).
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the sausage by slicing is crosswise into large coin shapes.* This is kind of a pain because the sausage kind of wants to spill out of the casing and mush about. But I really like the crispy edges that form when you use the slicing method. I've found that slicing in one confident motion with a sharp non-serrated chef's knife works best for me.
  4. Heat a large 12 inch skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot, add 1 or 2 teaspoons oil, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the sausage coins one at a time, placing them in the pan with space in between each one. This will make sure that each one gets seared and brown, instead of steaming (which is what would happen if you dumped it all in together.)
  5. Sear the sausage for 3-4 minutes, until the bottoms are nice and brown, then use tongs to flip each one.
  6. Sear the other sides for 2-3 minutes until brown.
  7. Add 1 cup beef broth (or 1 cup water + 1 teaspoon Better Than Beef Base), stir it all together, and cover. Turn the heat to medium and set a timer for 5 minutes.
  8. Chop up the veggies. Slice the yellow squash lengthwise (the long way) and then dice into half rounds. Slice half of the cherry tomatoes in half, or all of them (I prefer to leave some whole). Chop 1/4 cup of basil. Add half of the basil to the pasta that you set aside earlier.
  9. Stir the squash, tomatoes, and remaining basil into the pan with the sausage. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once it boils, cover and reduce the heat to medium. Set a timer for 5 minutes.
  10. Remove the lid and add 1/2 cup chopped green onions. Turn off the heat.
  11. Serve in shallow pasta bowls, spooned over the top of the pasta with plenty of broth.
  12. Garnish with more fresh basil. This is also great with fresh Parmesan on top, but it's not necessary.

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