Carrabba's Italian Grill was founded by Johnny Carrabba and Damian Mandola in Houston, Texas in 1986. The restaurant features hand-prepared family recipes made from the finest ingredients and prepared to order in an exhibition kitchen. The success of Carrabba's led to the popular PBS cooking show Cucina!, starring Carrabba and Mandola, as well as a series of companion cookbooks. There are currently 240 Carrabba's Italian Grill locations around the country.

Offering Italian-inspired cuisine passed down from our founders’ family recipes, Carrabba’s uses only the best ingredients to prepare fresh and handmade dishes cooked to order in a lively exhibition kitchen. Featuring a wood-burning grill inspired by the many tastes of Italy, customers can enjoy signature dishes, including Chicken Bryan, Spiedino di Mare and a fresh twist on an Italian Classic, Wood-grilled Chicken Marsala. Carrabba’s was voted #1 Italian in the 2014 Consumer Picks Survey by Nation’s Restaurant News.

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Fusilli With Zucchini, Sausage And Goat Cheese

Fusilli With Zucchini, Sausage And Goat Cheese

Carrabba's Restaurant Recipe

Serves 6-8

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
12 ounces Italian fennel sausage, sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
1 small red onion, chopped
1 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper, or to taste
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound Fusilli (corkscrew pasta)
4 large ripe Roma tomatoes, (about 1 pound), seeded and diced
3 small zucchini, (about 1/2 pound), trimmed and sliced very thinly
6 ounces Fresh goat cheese, cut into 1/2 inch chunks, at room temperature
1 teaspoon fresh oregano
1/2 cup freshly chopped, fresh Italian parsley
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

To prepare:  In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, stirring, until the sausage starts to brown, about 3 minutes. Add the onion and the red pepper and continue to cook until the sausage is cooked through and the onion is soft, another 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta until al dente, drain well, saving 1 cup of the pasta cooking water.

Return the sausage pan back to a medium heat. Add the drained pasta, the tomatoes, zucchini, goat cheese and the herbs and toss well. Add enough of the pasta water to moisten and make a nice sauce. The goat cheese should totally melt, become creamy and coat the pasta. Add half of the grated Parmigiano cheese and toss again. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve:  Transfer the pasta to a warm serving bowl or pasta platter. Serve, passing the remaining grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.

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