Tomato Vodka Cream Sauce
Jay and Julia joined us for dinner tonight. Big training weekend, so I wanted a high carbohydrate dinner, and high carbohydrate is what I got! Actually, at the last minute I defrosted and marinated some chicken breasts to throw on the grill, so there was some protein.
I love this sauce! I could eat a whole bowlful, licking it from a spoon. It has just the right amount of heat from some crushed dried red pepper.
- Penne with Tomato Vodka Cream Sauce (101 Quick & Delicious Recipes, The Best of Fine Cooking Fall 2003, p.38)
- Sourdough Bread with Sauteed Garlic Butter (Fine Cooking #43, pp. 48-49)
- Rosemary Grilled Chicken Breasts
- Salad with Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette
Penne with Tomato Vodka Cream Sauce
serves two to three generously
Use your largest and heaviest skillet, so there won't be any hot spots and you'll have enough room for all the ingredients. Cook the pasta first, drain and rinse it, and set aside while you're making the sauce. Have everything ready before you begin.
2 T. olive oil
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
1 t. chopped fresh thyme or oregano leaves (or 1/2 t. dried)
1/4 t. dried red chile flakes
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 c. vodka
1/3 c. homemade or low-salt chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 to 1/3 c. heavy cream
8 oz. dried penne, cooked, drained and rinsed under cold water
1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 c. roughly chopped flat leaf parsley
Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until thoroughly softened.
Add the garlic and cook just until fragrant. Add the tomatoes, herb, chile flakes, salt, pepper, vodka and broth. Increase the heat to medium high, and cook, stirring, until the sauce is reduced by about half and is very thick; you should be able to see the bottom of the pan for a second as you scrape your spoon across it.
Add the cream, increase the heat to high, and cook to reduce the cream and thicken the sauce slightly. Add the penne, Parmesan, and parsley and cook stirring, to heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.