Easy Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa Recipe: A Flavorful Feast

We’re diving into a dish that’s as comforting as it is flavorful today: creamy dijon penne with kielbasa. This recipe combines the smoky richness of kielbasa sausage with the sharp tang of Dijon mustard, all mellowed out by a creamy sauce that clings to every bite of penne pasta. It’s a fusion of flavors that might just become your next weeknight favorite.

What makes this dish truly stand out is its simplicity paired with depth of flavor. Whether you’re looking to impress guests or just treat yourself to a delicious meal after a long day, this recipe promises to deliver. The combination of hearty kielbasa and the creamy, mustard-infused sauce creates a comforting meal that’s both easy to prepare and satisfying. Join us as we explore how to bring this delightful dish to your table, ensuring a flavorful journey with every forkful.

Ingredients

Let’s dive deep into the flavorful world of Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa by breaking down the ingredients you’ll need. Gather these items to ensure a smooth cooking process and a delectable dining experience.

For the Pasta

  • 8 ounces penne pasta
  • Water, for boiling
  • 1 teaspoon salt, for the pasta water

For the Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 12 ounces kielbasa sausage, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds

This simple list of ingredients combines to create a complex tapestry of flavors that’s sure to bring warmth and satisfaction to your table. Let’s move forward and put these ingredients into action.

Required Tools and Equipment

To ensure our Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa turns out just as we’ve envisioned, it’s essential to have the right tools and equipment on hand. Here’s what you’ll need to bring this dish to life:

  • Large pot: Ideal for cooking the penne pasta to perfection. Ensure it’s large enough to give the pasta ample space to boil without sticking together.
  • Skillet or Sauté pan: A large, preferably non-stick, skillet or sauté pan is crucial for browning the kielbasa and sautéing the onion and garlic. This will also be where we combine most of our ingredients to create that flavorful creamy sauce.
  • Measuring cups and spoons: Accuracy matters in this recipe, especially when measuring ingredients like heavy cream, chicken broth, and Dijon mustard. Have a set of measuring cups and spoons ready to ensure each ingredient is added in just the right amount.
  • Wooden spoon or spatula: To stir our ingredients without risking damage to our skillet or sauté pan, a wooden spoon or spatula is perfect. It’s gentle on cookware and effective in mixing and incorporating all the ingredients.
  • Strainer or Colander: After boiling our penne pasta, we’ll need a strainer or colander to drain it well. This ensures our pasta is ready to absorb all the creamy sauce goodness without being waterlogged.
  • Cheese grater: For adding freshly grated Parmesan cheese to our dish, a cheese grater is necessary. Freshly grated cheese melts more uniformly, blending seamlessly into our creamy sauce.
  • Sharp knife and cutting board: A sharp knife will make quick work of dicing the onion, mincing the garlic, and slicing the kielbasa. Pair it with a sturdy cutting board for a safe and efficient prep process.

Having these tools and equipment ready before you begin will streamline your cooking process, making the creation of Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa a breeze. We’re ready to dive into the heart of cooking, blending flavors and textures into a dish that promises warmth and satisfaction with every bite.

Preparation Steps

With our tools at the ready, let’s jump into the heart of making this comforting dish. By following these steps, you’ll be on your way to enjoying a delicious, creamy Dijon penne with kielbasa.

Cooking the Pasta

  1. Fill a large pot with water, add a pinch of salt, and bring it to a rolling boil over high heat. This salted water will infuse the pasta with flavor as it cooks.
  2. Add 8 ounces of penne pasta to the boiling water and stir gently to prevent sticking. Check the package for the recommended cooking time; however, it’s generally about 11 minutes for al dente texture.
  3. Test the pasta by tasting a piece. It should be tender but still firm to the bite. Once it reaches this stage, remove the pot from the heat.
  4. Drain the pasta through a colander, reserving a cup of pasta water for later use in the sauce. This starchy water will help achieve the perfect sauce consistency.
  5. Return the cooked pasta to the pot (off the heat) to keep it warm. A dab of olive oil can be stirred in to prevent sticking if you’re not moving on to the sauce immediately.
  6. While the pasta is cooking, it’s the perfect time to prepare the kielbasa. Start by placing a piece of kielbasa on a cutting board.
  7. Using a sharp knife, cut the kielbasa into half-moon shapes, about 1/2 inch thick. This shape not only cooks evenly but also captures more sauce, enhancing the flavor.
  8. Ensure to slice through smoothly for uniform pieces, which contributes to both presentation and consistent cooking.
  9. Once all the kielbasa is sliced, set it aside on a plate. It will be added to the skillet soon, infusing the dish with its smoky goodness.

Cooking Instructions

Now that we’ve prepped our ingredients, let’s dive into the heart of cooking. We’re about to transform simple ingredients into a comforting and delicious meal.

Browning the Kielbasa

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. No need to add oil as the kielbasa will release its own fat.
  2. Add the sliced kielbasa to the skillet in a single layer. Aim for even spacing to ensure each piece browns nicely.
  3. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes on one side until the kielbasa is golden brown and then flip to brown the other side. This process not only adds texture but also deepens the smoky flavor.
  4. Once browned, remove the kielbasa from the skillet and set aside on a plate. We’ll bring them back into the mix with the sauce later.
  5. In the same skillet used for the kielbasa, lower the heat to medium and add a tablespoon of butter. Allow it to melt completely.
  6. Stir in one finely chopped onion and cook until translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes. The moisture from the onion will help deglaze the pan, picking up all those flavorful browned bits.
  7. Sprinkle in two tablespoons of all-purpose flour, whisking constantly for about two minutes to cook off the raw flour taste and form a roux.
  8. Gradually pour in one and a half cups of milk, continuously whisking to combine with the roux and prevent lumps. Keep the heat at a level where the milk heats up but doesn’t boil over.
  9. Once the mixture starts to thicken, about after 5 minutes, lower the heat and stir in two tablespoons of Dijon mustard, half a cup of grated Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper to taste. The sauce should coat the back of a spoon when it’s ready.
  10. Return the browned kielbasa to the skillet, mixing it thoroughly into the sauce to let the flavors meld together.
  11. Finally, toss the drained penne pasta into the skillet, stirring gently to ensure each noodle is beautifully coated in the creamy Dijon sauce. If the sauce feels too thick, add a bit of the reserved pasta water to reach your desired consistency.
  12. Serve hot, garnished with additional Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of fresh parsley if desired.

Assembling the Dish

After we’ve beautifully browned the kielbasa and crafted our rich, creamy sauce, the moment has arrived to bring it all together. Assembling this dish is where the magic really happens, transforming separate components into a harmonious, mouth-watering meal that’s both comforting and elegant. Let’s dive into the steps to finalize our Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa.

  1. Combine Penne and Sauce: Start by grabbing a large mixing bowl. Gently pour the cooked penne pasta into the bowl. Then, with a ladle, add the creamy Dijon sauce over the pasta. The sauce’s velvety texture and the pasta’s perfect al dente bite begin to meld together beautifully. Stir gently but thoroughly to ensure each piece of penne is lovingly coated in the creamy sauce.
  2. Add Kielbasa: Next, it’s time to introduce the star of the dish – the kielbasa. Spoon the browned slices of kielbasa into the bowl with the pasta and sauce. The smoky aroma of the kielbasa mixes with the tangy Dijon, creating an inviting scent that promises a delicious bite.
  3. Mix Well: Using a large spoon or spatula, mix all the ingredients together. It’s important to distribute the kielbasa evenly throughout the pasta to ensure every serving gets an ample share of the savory sausage. As you mix, the sauce begins to thicken slightly, clinging to the pasta and kielbasa, which signals that it’s almost time to serve.
  4. Garnish and Serve: Finally, sprinkle a generous amount of grated Parmesan cheese and a handful of chopped fresh parsley over the top. The Parmesan melts gently on the hot pasta, adding a layer of nuttiness, while the parsley introduces a fresh pop of color and flavor, making the dish as pleasing to the eye as it is to the palate.
  5. Enjoy Together: Dish out generous servings onto plates, ensuring there’s a good mix of penne, kielbasa, and sauce on each. The creamy Dijon penne with kielbasa is now ready to be enjoyed. It’s a dish best served hot, straight from the skillet to the table, surrounded by those who appreciate a meal crafted with heart and flavor.

Serving Suggestions

After we’ve combined the creamy Dijon sauce, penne, and kielbasa into a delightful symphony of flavors, it’s time to think about how to serve this comforting dish. The beauty of Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa lies not only in its simplicity and hearty flavors but also in its versatility when it comes to serving. Here are some ideas that can elevate this dish from great to unforgettable:

  • Fresh Salad: A crisp, fresh salad serves as the perfect counterbalance to the creamy richness of the pasta. Opt for greens like arugula or spinach with a light vinaigrette to add a touch of acidity and freshness.
  • Garlic Bread: Who can resist the allure of warm, buttery garlic bread? It pairs wonderfully with pasta dishes, making it an ideal side for scooping up any leftover sauce.
  • Steamed Vegetables: For a healthier side option, consider steamed vegetables such as broccoli, asparagus, or green beans. They add a pop of color and a dose of nutrition to your meal.
  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts: If you’re looking to add another layer of flavor, roasted Brussels sprouts with a sprinkle of Parmesan make for a delightful side. Their roasted, nutty flavor complements the smoky kielbasa beautifully.
  • Wine Pairing: A glass of wine can transform dinner into a dining experience. A medium-bodied white wine, such as Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, pairs nicely with the creamy sauce and savory kielbasa.

Each of these serving suggestions aims to balance the flavors and textures of the Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa, ensuring a harmonious meal that satisfies the palate. Feel free to mix and match these ideas to suit your tastes and preferences.

Make-Ahead and Storage Tips

Preparing meals ahead of time can be a lifesaver during busy weeks. Our Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa is no exception. Here are some tips to help you make the most out of your meal prep and ensure your leftovers stay as delicious as the day you made them.

Make-Ahead Instructions

For those who like to plan ahead, you can partially prepare this dish to save on time. Cook the penne pasta al dente, rinse under cold water, and toss with a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Store the cooled pasta in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. The kielbasa can also be sliced and browned in advance. Store it separately in the refrigerator.

Prepare the creamy Dijon sauce up to one day in advance. Once cooled, pour it into an airtight container and refrigerate. When you’re ready to serve, simply reheat the sauce on the stove over medium heat, adding a splash of milk if it’s too thick. Then, combine with the pasta and kielbasa, heat through, and serve. This method ensures each component maintains its texture and flavor.

Storage Tips

Leftovers of our Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa can be stored in the fridge or freezer with the right approach. In the refrigerator, place the cooled leftovers in an airtight container. Properly stored, they will last for 3 to 4 days.

For longer storage, freezing is a great option. Spoon the cooled concoction into a freezer-safe container or zip-top bag, leaving a small space for expansion. Freeze for up to 2 months. To reheat, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then warm on the stove over low heat, adding a little milk or water to adjust the consistency as needed. This method ensures your dish remains creamy and flavorful.

Conclusion

We’ve shared our secrets to creating a deliciously creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa that’s perfect for any occasion. It’s all about the harmony of flavors and the joy of sharing a hearty meal with loved ones. Remember, it’s not just about following the recipe but making it your own. Feel free to experiment with different ingredients and find what works best for you. And don’t worry about making too much; the leftovers taste just as amazing. Here’s to many delightful meals ahead!

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