Comfort Food for Company – Linguini and Sausage Casserole
We like this linguini and sausage dish anytime of day. Seriously, breakfast, lunch or dinner. It is just as good the next day (if there’s any left), and if you eat it standing up in front of the fridge and no one sees you, it does not have any calories.
If you want comfort food, and and something you haven’t had 72,000 times, here you go. Easy for company, too, with a simple salad and great bread–boom. You’ve seen prettier things to eat, but the taste is good as it gets.
Speaking of looks, think about an oyster, will you. You could put an oyster in an Oscar de la Renta dress, and it still would not look pretty. But if you’re an oyster person, what is better? I rest my case.
Chef Stephanie Valentine prepared this in her earliest professional cooking days. “A variation of this was famously served at Parker’s Seafood Grill on Balboa Peninsula during Sunday brunch. It was the first restaurant I worked at, and very busy. I would make 50 to 150 + servings for a buffet, served with a marinara sauce. It was a favorite with the customers and staff! I loved that I could make it a day or 2 in advance.
Note Steph originally served this with a tomato sauce, but I am way too lazy for that. And I like it as it is. But if you’re feeling saucy, hun, go for it.
- 8 ounces linguine
- 1 pound bulk breakfast sausage
- ½ onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ¼ cup sundried tomatoes, packed in oil, sliced
- ¼ cup kalamata olives, chopped
- 1 bunch spinach, cleaned
- ¼ cup grated Fontina (or Swiss) cheese
- ¼ cup grated mozzarella + ¼ cup for the top
- ¼ cup grated parmesan + ¼ cup for the top
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 3 eggs
- Chopped fresh herbs, such as thyme, basil, parsley
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Butter a 6-quart casserole dish.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and return to pot.
- While the water is heating and then pasta is cooking, brown the sausage over medium heat, breaking apart as it cooks.
- Drain some of the fat from the sausage, and to the same pan add the onion and garlic. Cook 3 minutes more until the onion is translucent.
- Add tomatoes, olives and spinach and cook a until the spinach is just wilted--a minute or two.
- Stir sausage mixture into pasta with the 4 cheeses, eggs, herbs and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Place into buttered casserole and top with the remaining parmesan and mozzarella. Cover and refrigerate up to 2 days or freeze until ready to bake. If frozen, thaw in fridge the night before cooking, and let sit at room temp about 30 minutes before baking (but no more).
- Preheat oven to 350 and bake for 30-45 minutes until browned and hot all the way through.
- Serve on its own or with a light tomato sauce and a good French or Italian style bread.
Butter a 6 quart casserole dish.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the package directions. jDrain and cool and put back in pot.
Preheat a large saute pan to medium and cook the sausage until browned and cooked through, remove some of the fat and add the onion and garlic, cook 3 minutes more until the onion is transluscent. Add the tomatoes, olives and spinach and cook until the spinach is just wilted.
Stir the sausage mixture into the pasta with the 4 cheeses, eggs, herbs and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place into the buttered casserole dish top with the remaining parmesan and mozzerella cover and refridgerate until ready to bake.
Bake at 350 for 30-45 minutes until browned and hot all the way through.
Serve on its own or with a light tomato sauce and a good french or italian style bread.
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