y wife works late on Wednesday evenings, so this is my day to play the role of “Mr. Mom”. On Wednesday afternoons it is my job to make sure homework gets done, baths are taken, and of course a healthy dinner is served. I will never be on the same expert level as my wife, but I am definitely getting better at this.
I pride myself on keeping things moving smoothly. While it is important to have a good home cooked meal, it needs to be easy and with minimal cleanup. To make matters more complicated, my wife has this strange thing about gluten… and while none of my kids, or anyone in our family for that matter, have any sort of sensitivity to gluten, she is adamant that gluten is evil. I have given up on any attempt to present a logical argument about how nuts this idea is – but the problem is, growing up with an Italian mom most of the stuff I am good at cooking (pasta, pizza, etc.) is full of gluten. And most gluten free items I have tasted have been pretty awful. That said, my mission has been to find a delicious, super easy dish to serve the kids that satisfies my wife’s opposition to gluten. After several attempts, I think I have have a winner. More importantly, my kids think its a winner.
As a side note – we live fairly close to a Whole Foods, so I typically stop here on Wednesday to get the ingredients for this meal. To me, part of what makes this dish so good are 3 main ingredients I get from Whole Foods:
- pasta sauce – I use the 365 brand Roasted Garlic Pasta Sauce
- Italian sausage – get the mild Italian pork sausage from the butcher counter
- gluten free pasta – my choice being the Delallo whole-grain rice spaghetti or penne rigate
Trust me. Using these will make the difference.
Super Easy Gluten Free Pasta & Red Sauce
|5 Minutes||Super Easy|
|30 minutes, or more||6|
- 4-5 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- Fresh basil
- 1 Tablespoon dried Italian spices
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 2 mild Italian sausage links, casing removed
- 2 25 ounce jars of pasta sauce – I use 365 Roasted Garlic from Whole Foods
- ½ cup grated parmesan
- 1-2 cups chicken broth (optional)
- 18 ounces of gluten free pasta – I use Delallo Gluten Free Penne Rigate
In a large sauce pan or dutch oven, add oil oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic, and sauté for a few minutes. Add ground turkey and sausage (casing removed) and brown for about 5 minutes.
Once meat is browned, add two jars of pasta sauce. Add the basil (I like to chop half, and add the other half in whole), the dried Italian spices, and parmesan.
Reduce heat and drink a glass of wine (like my current favorite Naked Wine, F. Stephen Millier Black Label Zinfandel) while you let the sauce simmer. Let simmer for at least 30 minutes, but the longer it simmers the better it will taste. If you simmer longer than 30 minutes, I add a cup or two of chicken broth to keep the sauce from getting too thick (and it adds in more good flavor). Make a salad while you wait.
Finally, boil your pasta per its instructions. Mix generous amounts of red sauce with the cooked pasta and top with grated parmesan. Stand back and watch your kids devour it before your eyes.
Celebrate with another glass of wine. Nailed it!