Sunday Brunch: Rigatoni with Easy Pan Sauce

WGN Weekend Morning News

Photojournalist Mike D’Angelo joins WGN Weekend Morning News in studio to share his recipe for Rigatoni Pasta with Easy Pan Sauce.

INGREDIENTS

  • 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tsp. Kosher salt, 2 tbsp water
  • .5 tsp black pepper
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 5 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tbsp. oil for cooking plus more for finishing
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan or Pecorina Romano cheese, more for serving
  • 1 lb. dried Rigatoni pasta

DIRECTIONS

  • Fill a pot with 4 quarts of water and boil on medium to high heat.
  • While water boils, heat oil on medium to low heat for two minutes.
  • Roughly chop garlic while oil heats, then add to oil.
  • Lightly sauté garlic until soft, 3 to 5 minutes. Don’t let it brown too fast.
  • Once garlic softens, add tomatoes, salt, pepper, sugar and basil. Lightly tear basil to expose more of their flavor.
  • Carefully stir all ingredients together.
  • Cook for 5 minutes then reduce heat to low.
  • Cover and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Once water boils, add about 2 tbsp. of salt to water and lightly stir.
  • Adding salt seasons the pasta via the water.
  • Add Rigatoni and cook about 8 to 11 minutes, depending on box directions.
  • After about 5 to 7 minutes, use a strainer and scoop out one piece. There should be a slight chew and crunch with a thin white ring inside.
  • Stay at this tasting technique a few more times until the consistency is achieved. Drain pasta and save cup of water.
  • This is starchy, salty, flavorful stuff that will help thin the sauce or give a boost to leftovers. Add strained pasta back to pot.
  • Do not rinse pasta, it will remove flavor and texture.
  • Stir sauce and taste for flavor, ladle sauce over pasta. Lightly stir without breaking Rigatoni. Sprinkle half of cheese and stir to incorporate. Drizzle olive oil on top for flavor.

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