Skillet Baked Ziti by
Source: Emily Knoelke
1 lb sweet or hot Italian sausage, casings removed
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (or more or less to your taste)
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (28-oz) can crushed tomatoes
3 cups water
12 oz ziti
1/2 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
4 oz (about 1 cup) freshly grated mozzarella
Heat the oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a 12-inch oven-safe skillet set over medium-high heat, brown the sausage until no longer pink, about 4 minutes, breaking up any large pieces with a wooden spoon. Stir in the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the water and ziti and stir to combine. Cover, increase the heat to medium, and cook at a vigorous simmer, stirring often, 15 to 18 minutes, until the pasta is just tender.
Remove from heat and stir in the cream, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan, and 3 tablespoons of the basil. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Sprinkle the mozzarella and remaining 1/4 cup of parmesan over the top, and transfer to the oven. Bake until the cheese has melted and browned, and the sauce is bubbling, 10 to 15 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of basil and serve.