When it comes to hearty, satisfying comfort food, this Creamy Rigatoni is pretty high on my family’s list of favorites. I mean, whats not to love about rigatoni pasta in a creamy tomato based sauce, with garlic, parmesan cheese, and a sprinkling of freshly chopped basil? Nothing, that’s what! This simple dish is ready in about 30 minutes, and pretty much proves that food doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive to be delicious. With a salad or garlic bread (if you’re really hungry), this is a perfect weeknight or weekend meal. Simple enough for every day occasions, but nice enough to feed to company.
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1/4 cup of finely chopped garlic
1 can whole peeled plum tomatoes, crushed by hand and juices reserved
12 oz uncooked rigatoni pasta
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 oz parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 oz chopped fresh basil for garnish
Melt butter in a large dutch oven over medium. Add garlic and onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden brown. This process takes approximately 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and their juices; bring to a boil over medium. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer while stirring occasionally until sauce thickens. This process takes approximately 20 -30 minutes.
Cook pasta in a salter water according to package directions for al dente. Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta starch water. Stir cream, salt, back pepper and crushed red pepper into tomato sauce. Add cooked pasta, and toss to coat. Add reserved pasta starch water, 1/3 cup at a time until desired consistency is reached. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and garnish with basil. Serve warm with your favorite wine and garlic bread or salad of choice.
P.S. You can make this tomato sauce ahead of time and can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.