One Recipe, Two Meals: Penne with a Creamy Tomato Vodka Sauce

Total Time:
40 min
15 min
25 min

4 servings (2 kids, 2 adults)

  • Salt
  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • One 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, blended in a food processor
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Grated Parmesan and basil leaves, for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper
  • 1 shot (50 milliliters) vodka
  • Let's start simple for the kids. You'll bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the penne and cook it until al dente. Drain it-like always, you know.

  • In the meantime, heat the olive oil in another medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and let bloom until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and a small pinch of salt. Let simmer for about 5 minutes. Add in the heavy cream and simmer another 5.

  • Reserve about 1/2 cup of the penne and divide between 2 small bowls. Ladle the creamy sauce over the pasta and garnish with Parmesan. Maybe add a little bit of basil if your kids like it. Done!

  • Now for you: Let's get back to the creamy sauce. Add the Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper and vodka; let it simmer another 5 minutes or so. Taste it and add a pinch of salt if needed.

  • You can either toss the remaining pasta with the sauce (my preferred method), or ladle the sauce over the penne. Do whatever makes you sob like a baby.

  • Garnish with more freshly grated Parmesan and basil leaves! Serve with a giant green salad, crusty bread and WINE (obviously the wine). All caps necessary. For the love. The end.

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