As usual, I got a few great new cookbooks for Christmas this year. Resolving to try a few new recipes each week, I decided to make Ina Garten’s Orecchiete with Broccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage (from Barefoot Contessa: Foolproof) for dinner the other night. Fortunately and unfortunately, I didn’t have everything I needed to copy her recipe verbatim so I subbed a few ingredients out for a few things I had on hand. The result was perfectly delicious. We’ll be making this one again for sure.
Ina-Inspired Sausage and Kale Pasta
1 Box of Pasta (orecchiete if you have it, anything else if you don’t- we used bow ties)
1 large head of Kale, veins removed, chopped
6 links of sweet italian sausage
1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes in their juice (I used the kind with basil)
3 tablespoons of tomato paste
1/2 cup marsala wine (Ina’s calls for red wine but we didn’t -and rarely do- have any on hand)
4 garlic cloves, chopped
salt and pepper (red pepper flakes too if you like heat)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Prick sausages all over with a fork and bake in the oven for 15 minutes turning once until just cooked through.
3. While sausage is cooking, boil pasta 5 minutes less than package instructions. Add kale to the boiling pasta for last five minutes of cooking time. Drain kale and pasta all together.
3. Slice sausage into 1 inch pieces and saute in a medium-hot skillet until nice and brown. Remove to a plate.
4. In same skillet, add a few Tablespoons olive oil and chopped garlic. Saute until fragrant.
5. Add tomatoes and their juice and stir in marsala. Add tomato paste, salt and pepper and bring sauce to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add sausage, kale, and pasta. Cook for two more minutes.
6. Serve with mozzarella or parmesan cheese, garlic bread, and a green salad.
Voila! Quick and easy take on plain ol’ pasta with red sauce. The kale tastes amazing- keeps a nice bite in this dish. Plus it packs a huge nutrient punch so you are getting a great green into a traditionally carb loaded meal. Not that any of my meals AREN’T carb loaded- but oh well! It’s delicious. Ina’s recipe is great too if you can find the broccoli rab and happen to have a good red wine handy 😉