Spinach and Sausage Oven Baked Spaghetti

Tonight, I cheated a little… While not entirely unhealthy, tonight’s meal called for Italian Sausage, which isn’t the healthiest meat you can find. BUT, I have to say that this was the best pasta dish I’ve had in a very long time. I’d even say one of the best I’ve ever had.

Of course, if one wanted to keep the dish clean, they could replace the sausage with lean chicken meat, but I think the taste would suffer some… The combination of  Italian sausage, spinach and basil was simply magical. I will, however, eventually try a chicken version. I just have to!

Also, the original recipe called for mushrooms, but my daughter despises them so, of course, since she was in charge of cooking tonight, she omitted them (and I don’t blame her, I mean, who would purposely add something they hate to a recipe… besides, I didn’t have any in the fridge!). I think, however, that they would’ve added an extra little something so I would definitely add them!

There was also a Bechamel sauce in the original recipe. My daughter and I both agreed that it was totally unnecessary, so we dropped it.

So here goes our version of a recipe adapted from Coup de Pouce – Au menu ce soir

Ingredients
(Serves 4)

  • 4 hot Italian sausages, casing removed
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tbs dried basil
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • ½ can tomato paste
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 4 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 240g whole wheat spaghetti
  • 120g grated mozzarella

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.
  • In a large saucepan, cook the sausage meat over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until it loses its pink color. Remove excess fat, add the mushrooms, onion, garlic, basil, pepper, bay leaves and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until all liquid has evaporated.
  • Add tomatoes, water and tomato paste. Bring to a boil then lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until almost all liquid has evaporated. Add spinach and stir.
  • Meanwhile, bring salted water to a boil in a large saucepan and cook spaghetti until slightly undercooked. Drain well and add to the sauce. Stir to coat well.
  • Transfer onto a baking dish and sprinkle cheese on top. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes then switch to broil and broil for 2-3 minutes, until cheese starts to bubble and turns golden.
  • Serve immediately

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