Spicy Sausage Meat Sauce

The first time I made a meat sauce myself I was actually trying to make chili. Uhg I know I had no idea what the hell I was doing. Anyway, it was right when I moved away & I didn’t really know how to make anything. So I did, basically what I do right now, & through some stuff together, think about some pointers my mom gave me or I picked up on while watching her, & tried to make a meat sauce.

It didn’t work.


It was not saucy, there too much meat, & it ended up tasting kind of tomatoey, like ketchup. So basically I threw it on top of some noodles & called it meat sauce. Well in five years I have perfected my meat sauce… & my skills of throwing shit together.

Anyway, one of my favorite, & simple meals is my spicy sausage meat sauce. I love having a spicy sauce with my pasta & having sausage instead of the normal turkey or beef definitely helps out in the spice area. Italian-Americans definitely make their sauce much soupier & heavier than Italians. I am convinced it is because we are usually using boxed pastas so we try to cover up the starchiness of the macaroni but until we all start making our own pasta dough, load me up on sauce.


2 Hot Italian sausage links
3 cloves garlic
1 shallot, thinly sliced
¼ cup olive oil
28 oz crushed tomato
14 oz water
Red pepper flakes

1. Score sausage long ways with a sharp paring knife and remove the casing.
2. Fry sausage at the bottom of a small pan.
3. Remove sausage and lower heat to medium. Add olive oil and scallions to pan. Cook until translucent but not browned.
4. Add pressed or minced garlic and continue stirring so it doesn’t burn. Add red pepper flakes and cook out oils.
5. Add crushed tomato. Fill can halfway with water and add to sauce.
6. Raise temperature to medium-high and add sausage. Once at a boil, lower to a simmer and cook 45-60 minutes stirring regularly.


Penne Ala Vodka

In Italian families sauce is a very important thing. Every family has their own recipes that get passed on for generations and generations. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, families actually share recipes with friends. At my high school graduation party my mom made four batches of vodka sauce and everyone loved it. Let me tell you, an Italian women hearing that someone loves her sauce is like a baseball player winning the World Series. But when my friend, whose mother is from Italy, told my mom her vodka sauce was better than his mom’s, I thought she died and went to heaven. Below is her recipe which came to her via a family friend.

¼ cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed
3 shallots, sliced
3 scallions, chopped
1 pint (2 cups) heavy cream
½ cup fresh basil
½ cup vodka
1.2 cup grated cheese
1 can crushed tomatoes
Red pepper flakes

1. Saute garlic, shallots and scallion in olive oil on medium-high heat.
2. Add tomatoes and simmer for 15 minutes stirring often.
3. Add vodka and seasonings, simmer for 15 minutes covered.
4. Slowly add heavy cream and then grated cheese and let cook for another 10 minutes.
5. Once sauce is cooled, place in a covered Tupperware container and let sit in refrigerator overnight.
6. Heat in saucepan and serve over pasta the next day.