This pasta is dedicated to my late cousin, Michael. When he passed many years ago, this pasta was gifted to my family, and it has been a go to dish ever since. Every time we eat it, we think of him.
1 lb penne pasta
6 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped white onion
1 tsp minced garlic
3 - 28oz. cans Italian plum tomatoes, drained
2 tsp dried basil
1 1/2 tsp dried crushed red pepper
2 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth
2 1/2 cups grated havarti cheese
1/3 cup sliced pitted black olives
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
To make sauce:
Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a in a large pot over medium heat.
Once hot, add onion and garlic. Sauté until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
Mix in tomatoes, dried basil, and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil, breaking up tomatoes with the back of a large spoon. Add broth, bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium and simmer about an hour, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thickened and reduced to about 6 cups. Season with salt and pepper. (Sauce can be made up to 2 days ahead of assembly).
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Cook pasta according to package al dente instructions, drain.
Pour sauce over pasta and toss to combine. Mix in havarti cheese. Transfer pasta to a large baking dish. Sprinkle with black olives and parmesan cheese.
Bake until pasta is heated through, about 30 minutes.
Sprinkle with fresh basil and enjoy!