You Won't Be Single For Long Vodka Cream Pasta

This recipe will make enough for two couples. If you plan a romantic evening where more than two's a crowd, reserve half the sauce to freeze for another supper before the addition of basil, and only cook 1/2 to 2/3 pound of penne.
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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 25 min
  • Prep: 5 min
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, once around the pan in a slow stream

1 tablespoon butter

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 shallots, minced

1 cup vodka

1 cup chicken stock

1 can crushed tomatoes (32 ounces)

Coarse salt and pepper

16 ounces pasta, such as penne rigate

1/2 cup heavy cream

20 leaves fresh basil, shredded or torn

Crusty bread, for passing

Directions

  1. Heat a large skillet over moderate heat. Add oil, butter, garlic, and shallots. Gently saute shallots for 3 to 5 minutes to develop their sweetness. Add vodka to the pan, 3 turns around the pan in a steady stream will equal about 1 cup. Reduce vodka by half, this will take 2 or 3 minutes. Add chicken stock, tomatoes. Bring sauce to a bubble and reduce heat to simmer. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. While sauce simmers, cook pasta in salted boiling water until cooked to al dente (with a bite to it). While pasta cooks, prepare your salad or other side dishes.
  3. Stir cream into sauce. When sauce returns to a bubble, remove it from heat. Drain pasta. Toss hot pasta with sauce and basil leaves. Pass pasta with crusty bread.