FUSILLI WITH MUSHROOMS, PEPPERS AND SAUSAGE (for four)
2 tablespoons olive oil, more as necessary
6 Italian sweet sausage links, casings removed and sausage crumbled
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
3 red bell peppers (preferably one each red, orange and yellow),ends, seeds and pith removed, sides divided at the rib indentations, skin removed with a vegetable peeler, flesh cut into 1 inch squares
4 cups baby bella mushrooms, stemmed and quartered
4 to 6 jarred hot cherry peppers in vinegar, drained and sliced
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
red pepper flakes to taste
4 tablespoons minced flat-leaf Italian parsley
salt and pepper
1 pound fusilli or rotini (Barilla preferred), cooked al dente with 2 cups of the cooking liquid reserved
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt and pasta and cook until al dente, 10 to 12 minutes.
2. While the water is heating and the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a large skillet, add sausage and cook over medium-high heat, stirring and breaking lumps into small pieces, until lightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove sausage to a large bowl.
3. Add onions and garlic to skillet and cook over medium high heat, adding more oil if necessary, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove to bowl with sausage.
4. Add mushrooms, and more oil if the skillet is dry, and sauté over medium high heat 3 to 4 minutes. Remove to bowl with sausage and onions.
5. Add peppers to skillet and sauté until softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Return contents of bowl (sausage, onions, garlic and mushrooms) to skillet, add grape tomatoes and cook until just heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
6. When pasta is al dente (about 10 minutes for Barilla. If you are using another brand of dried pasta, follow instructions on box), add to the sausage mixture in skillet and toss. If needed, add pasta cooking liquid to moisten the mixture. Toss with parsley and serve with Parmigiano on the side.