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World Food Champion Dave Elliot features Penne a la Vodka

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Dave Elliot is headed to the World Food Championships in Las Vegas next week. A year ago Elliot won the competition for his pie. On Thursday Elliot was at FOX 4 featuring some of his delicious dishes.

Penne a la Vodka

Vodka Sauce

1/8 c. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 can crushed tomatoes
¾ tsp sugar
¼ tsp crushed red pepper (more if you like spicy)
2 TB Fresh Oregano – finely chopped
2 TB Fresh Basil – finely chopped
½ cup vodka (a little more for stronger vodka flavor)
½ pint heavy cream
Salt & Pepper to taste
Shredded Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese


In large skillet or sauce pot heat olive oil on medium high heat.  Add onions to cook / sweat in oil for about 10 minutes and add garlic and crushed red pepper flakes.  Then add vodka and allow to reduce for about 10 minutes.

Add tomatoes and sugar and allow to simmer another 10-15 minutes.  Reduce heat and add cream.  Allow to reduce for at least 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add fresh herbs and a generous handful of cheese.  Pour over freshly cooked penne pasta and combine well to cover pasta.

Serve with another generous sprinkle of cheese and fresh herbs.  If desired, you can also add chicken, Italian sausage, or shrimp.