Make the homemade marinara sauce and set aside (can be made up to 3 days in advance, stored in the refrigerator).
In a large pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.
When the oil is just starting to smoke, add the onions and lower the heat to medium. Cook until starting to soften, about 3 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
Add the basil, parsley, and red peppers (to taste), cooking and stirring for about 30 seconds.
Remove the pan from the heat and carefully add the vodka (stand back when doing this). If the vodka does not flame, very carefully light a long match and ignite. (again, stand back).
Once flame has died down, return the pan to the heat and add the marinara sauce and simmer for about 5 to 6 minutes.
Add the cream and bring to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes until slightly thickened.
Meanwhile, cook the penne in a salted pot of water for 8 minutes, or until al dente.
Drain the pasta. Bring the sauce to a simmer again and stir in 1/2 cup of the Romano cheese, and season with salt and pepper.
Add the pasta to the sauce and mix well over low heat until penne is fully coated. Serve with remaining cheese on the side.