Yesterday (February 22) was Ash Wednesday. If you’re Catholic like my family, you know that Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent. With Lent comes some days of fasting and abstinence, famously from meat. Ash Wednesday is a meatless day for us, as are the remaining Fridays of the Lenten season. With all that being said, this post will be the first part in a series of vegetarian and pescatarian meals I will be making for my family in the coming weeks. Tonight’s dish: Penne alla Vodka.
I love this meal for a variety of reasons. First, I love pasta. That’s an easy one. Second, it’s insanely easy to make and took me roughly 45 minutes to complete (and that timing included me filming a Tik Tok video of the recipe). Third, this pasta dish is incredibly delicious!
Ingredients for Penne alla Vodka
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, finely diced
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/2 c. vodka
- 1 – 6 oz can of tomato paste
- 3 – 28 oz cans of whole tomatoes, puréed
- 1 c. heavy cream
- 1 – 12 oz bag of frozen peas
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tbs sugar
- 1 tbs salt
- 1 lbs penne pasta
Fill a large pot with salted water and begin heating to a boil. Set aside on the stove.
In a large pot, heat the olive oil and add the onion and minced garlic. Cook on low to medium heat until translucent. (Don’t burn the garlic!) Once very translucent and aromatic, add the can of tomato paste and combine. Cook the paste mixture for about 3 minutes.
Deglaze the pot with the vodka. Add the puréed tomatoes, heavy cream, peas, pepper, sugar, and salt to the pot. Mix well, and bring to a simmer. Simmer. the sauce for about 30 minutes.
Once the sauce has been simmering for a while and is almost complete, add the penne pasta to the boiling water and cook till al dente.
Once finished, drain the pasta and add it to the sauce.
Serve with Italian bread, and finish with parmesan cheese (and hot pepper flakes if you’re like me). Enjoy!
If you have any Lenten recipes that you and your family enjoy, let me know!