Zesty Italian Sausage & Fennel Pasta

This is a great week night dish. Just a few ingredients, a couple steps and dinner is on the table. If you can find the sausage already out of the casing, it will save you another step. I sometimes cut the sausage and pasta amounts in half to save on calories. It is still very tasty. The cheese is optional but it does add another layer of flavor. Serve with a salad and some crusty bread. It looks like you you have cooked all day but it only takes a few minutes.

Serves 6:

Ingredients:

2 teaspoons salt
1 pound pasta shells
1 pound Italian sausage, hot or mild
2 large onions, diced
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 cup fresh fennel, thinly sliced
1 15 oz can white beans
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
1 sprinkle salt & pepper to taste
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated, optional
have cooked all day and it only took a few minutes.

Directions:

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the salt.

Add pasta and cook until ala dente. Drain

Break sausage out of casing into a dutch oven. Add onions and basil.

Brown the meat, breaking into small chucks. Cook until onions are soft.

Add fennel and cook about 4 minutes.

Add beans and tomatoes, bring to a boil and pepper & salt to taste.

Add the drained noodles, toss into the sauce.

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

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