Penne with Vodka Cream Sauce

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This is one of my all-time favorite recipes that never fails me. It is based on Rachel Ray’s “You Won’t Be Single for Long Vodka Sauce” recipe, but I have made it my own with a few additions. It’s super easy and does not need to cook for long at all. This recipe covers 1lb. pasta generously and serves 4 adults. It’s awesome served with crunchy garlic bread that you can dip into the excess sauce. Cautionary note: when adding the vodka in, I would recommend turning off your stove for a minute as it may splatter and could possibly ignite. This may or may not have happened in my kitchen…..my motto is if you can’t be a good example, serve as a horrible warning….

2 TBSP butter
2 TBSP olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
2/3 cup vodka
1/2 cup chicken stock (richer taste than broth)
1 32oz can crush tomatoes (i use Tuttarossa with basil- best taste!)
1/2 cup or more heavy cream
15-25 basil leaves, shredded
1/2 cup or more grated pecorino romano cheese
salt & pepper to taste
crushed red pepper flakes to taste (i use 1/2 tsp)
1 lb cooked penne pasta

*put butter and olive oil in large pan on medium low heat
*saute garlic and shallot in butter/oil for only one or two minutes – soft but not brown
*turn off stove, add vodka, turn stove back on and cook down for 2 minutes
*add chicken stock and cook down for 2 minutes
*add crushed tomatoes, heavy cream, grated cheese, basil leaves, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes
*cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently
*add 1lb. cooked penne to the pan, cook for 30 seconds and enjoy.

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