Olivia's birthday was last month and one of things we did was let her pick what she wanted to eat at each of the meals that day.
For breakfast, she wanted biscuits with cheese and bacon in the center. Lunch was at Burger King because she wanted to taste one of their shakes. For dinner, she picked a recipe off Pinterest for Spicy Smoked Sausage Alfredo Bake. The pin led to Lets Dish Recipes.
Spicy Smoked Sausage Alfredo Bake
Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
The tubes of pasta and smoked sausage were covered in a creamy, cheesy sauce. Olivia liked the sausage in it, but the rest of us were mixed about whether we liked the sausage in it or would have preferred it on the side.
Either way, it is a delicious and easy-to-prepare dinner. Olivia really like her birthday dinner.
16 ounces dry pasta
3 tablespoons butter
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken broth
2 cups half and half
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (I did not include the flakes because Olivia doesn't like spicy food)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 (12 oz) fully cooked smoked sausage, any variety
Cook pasta according to package directions until just al dente; drain.
While pasta cooks, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Stir in flour.
Whisk in chicken broth until smooth, then stir in half and half.
Add salt, pepper, cayenne, and red pepper flakes and simmer until sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.
Stir in Parmesan cheese and 1 cup of mozzarella until cheeses are melted and smooth.
Slice sausage into 1/4 inch pieces and add to the sauce, along with the chopped parsley and cooked pasta. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed.
Preheat broiler. Pour the pasta mixture into a lightly greased, 9x13 inch baking dish. Top with remaining mozzarella cheese. Broil for 2-3 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and golden. (I didn't do this. It would have put a nice, crusty cheese cover on the pasta, though.)