Sausage Florentine Serpentini
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1½ pounds sweet or hot Italian sausage (bulk or casing removed from link)
5 cloves garlic chopped
1 onion, diced (about ¼ cup)
1 box (10 ounces) frozen creamed spinach, thawed
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon fresh basil torn (or 1 teaspoon dried)
1 tablespoon fresh oregano torn (or 1 teaspoon dried)
1 teaspoon diced fresh parsley (or scant ½ teaspoon dried)
1 teaspoon garlic herb salt free seasoning
½ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
½ teaspoon pepper
1 jar (24 ounces) marinara sauce, divided
1 cup vegetable broth
Red pepper flakes, optional
1 pound serpentini noodles
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
¼ cup grated Romano cheese
Add olive oil to a large skillet; add sausage, breaking into pebble-sizes pieces. Add garlic and onion and cook until sausage and onions are browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the fat.
Break spinach into smaller chunks and add to the skillet along with the diced tomatoes, basil, oregano, parsley, garlic and herb seasoning and salt and pepper to taste.
In a medium bowl, mix 1 cup of the marinara sauce and vegetable broth. Add to the sausage mixture. If adding pepper flakes for a spicy taste, add it in now. Cover. Bring to a boil. Stir and then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
While the sausage mixture simmers, sprinkle ½ teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil in water in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Add serpentini noodles and cook about 8-10 minutes until tender; do not overcook. Drain and return to pot; sprinkle a few drops of olive oil on the noodles and toss to keep noodles from sticking.
In a large bowl, mix remaining marinara sauce, sugar and grated Romano cheese; add the noodles and toss to coat. Transfer pasta to a serving platter and spoon sausage mixture over noodles. Garnish with additional grated cheese.
Serves six to eight.
Cook's note: Any shaped noodle can substitute for the serpentini.