Baked Ziti with Turkey Sausage

Servings - 8   Serving Size - 1/8th of recipe   Points Plus per Serving - 8 Points+
Calories - 312.5,   Total Fat - 7.4g,   Carb. - 45.5g,   Protein - 21.1g,   Fiber - 7.7g

3/4 lb raw, spicy ( or not) turkey sausage, casings removed
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium red pepper, chopped ( or green)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes ( or to taste)
smoked paprika, to taste  (optional)
2 TBS tomato paste
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. fennel seed
1/2 tsp. salt or to taste
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1 - 14 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
1 - 14 oz. can of diced tomatoes
1/2 of one of the empty 14 oz. cans of tomatoes filled with water (optional)
10 oz. frozen green peas
12 oz. uncooked whole-wheat ziti OR penne, UNDER cooked according to package directions by a few minutes
6 oz. shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1.  Once the pasta is cooked and drained, open the frozen peas and place on top of the hot pasta. 
2.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a 13 x 9 inch baking dish with cooking spray.  
3.  In a large nonstick skillet , crumble the sausage and brown over medium heat.  Drain off any fat, and add garlic, onion and pepper.  Cook stirring often until softened, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the tomato paste, crushed pepper flakes,smoked paprika, both cans of tomatoes, water (if using), oregano, basil, thyme, fennel seed, salt and pepper.  Bring to simmer, then reduce heat and cook uncovered for about 5 minutes.  
4. Stir in the cooked pasta and peas and half the cheese.  Spread evenly in the 13 x 9 " baking pan.  Top evenly with remaining cheese. 
5.  Bake until the cheese has melted and the casserole is bubbling, about 20 minutes.  Let stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving.