I love food. I think we can all agree since I own a food blog and this blog is also covered in lots of food pics. One of my favorite Italian dishes is cheese tortellini in a heavy cream sauce. Oh, my goodness. It is so good and I could probably eat it every day. However, it is not the healthiest dish. I do not have any Italian in my bloodline, but this is a dish that my grandmother has perfected.
My grandmother was born in 1916 and raised in New York City. She had an Italian friend that lived a few blocks away that gave her the recipe for Cheese Tortellini with bacon and peas. Over the years she has made it a ton because it always reminds her of living in NYC and her old friend that shared it with her.
Although I love this dish, I have not made it at home because if I knew how to make this dish, I really would eat it everyday! So, I decided to create a tortellini dish that was a little healthier and yet, I could still enjoy without a lot of guilt, but still feel comforted with on a chillier evening.
I use Ragu sauce in my tortellini soup recipe version. 1. Beacause it is the best tasting, and 2. The founder Assunta Cantisano was born in Naples, Italy and settled in Rochester, New York in 1914. During the great depression she planted a tomato garden in her backyard and started making sauce from her family recipe of Naples, Italy. She started selling the sauce in jars to neighbors from her front porch. It became so popular, she started the Ragu packing company and Ragu has been a success ever since.
This story reminds me of my grandmother’s recipe and story from when she was in NY at the same time.
- 1 package hot sausage (16 ounces)
- 4 cloves pressed garlic
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, grated
- ½ c. water
- 2 15-oz. cans chicken broth
- 1/3 c. apple cider
- 1 16 oz. jar Ragu tomato sauce
- 1 c. grated carrots
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 medium zucchini, grated
- 8-10 oz. package cheese tortellini
- 2 Tbsp. dried parsley
- Begin cooking sausage over medium heat, in a pan and cooked until browned. If it is fatty, drain the fat when it’s about halfway cooked.
- In a separate pot, add olive oil, garlic and onion and cooked until onion is translucent.
- Once sausage is cooked, add it to your pot with the garlic and onions.
- Add tomato sauce, vinegar, water, chicken broth, carrots, oregano, and basil. Cover and simmer for 1/2 hour.
- Add parsley and zucchini and simmer for another 15 minutes.
- Add tortellini and cook until tender.
- Serve with parmesan cheese (optional)