Delicious juicy Italian sausage and the slightly bitter yummy taste of rapini come together again to make an awesome traditional Orecchiette with Rapini & Sausage pasta dish. It’s great for supper tonight and lunch tomorrow; cold or hot!
So I confess… my love of rapini and the fact that it has been on sale for multiple weeks means a lot of my suggestions for side dish pairings have been sautéed rapini – and this week is no exception, besides the fact that it is incorporated with the main.
But this pasta is all the yum, and for multiple reasons.
Hot Italian Sausage: juicy, meaty, flavourful… great all mashed up like ground meat or in slices. I am of the mashed variety. Are you reading this and are vegetarian or vegan? Cannellini beans! They’re a great substitute for sausage in this recipe.
Rapini: I think I’ve said enough about this yummy and slightly bitter vegetable. I’ve actually been reading a great book I got for my birthday, Flavor: The Science of Our Most Neglected Sense by Bob Holmes. It’s been a fantastic read so far and has been giving me great idea’s for some Science Bite posts, but I mention it here because he talks about our ability to taste bitterness and how our genetics and how we learn to appreciate flavours can have an impact on the foods we like – super cool and super nerdy.
Garlic: because an Italian dish without a little garlic is blasphemy.
Orecchiette: ok, it doesn’t need to be orecchiette perse but I find it’s a great pairing; plus orecchiette means little ears! I always use dried pasta, bonus if you can get fresh! If you can’t find orecchiette, try a short smallish pasta: penne rigate, fusilli, rotini, gemelli… you get my drift.
Those 4 ingredients make my heart ache and rejoice!
Did I mention it’s super quick to throw together?! AND… Little tidbit, stock up on rapini when it’s on sale, blanch, let cool and freeze! You can always have Orecchiette with Rapini & Sausage even when there is no rapini to be found! For blanching instructions see my Sautéed Rapini recipe.
Another reason to make this recipe, it’s leftover approved! It’s great to take for lunch, heated or eaten cold, this pasta recipe has your back and mine at least once a month.
Unrelated to the recipe, I’m going camping for the first time next week! AHHHH! Do you have any recipe recommendations for cooking in the wilderness?! Aaaaannnd sights to see while camping in New Hampshire?!
Also heading over to Boston, besides Harvard, MIT (nerdy side of me!) and eating at Flour Bakery – I’ll fulfil a wanting I wrote about in my Homemade Pop-tarts post! So if you have any suggestions for Boston, let me know as well!
Thanks in advance!!!!
Hope you enjoy!
Orecchiette with Rapini & Sausage
- 1 lb. 500g dried orecchiette pasta
- 4 tbsp. olive oil
- 5 garlic cloves sliced
- 1 lb. 500g hot Italian sausages (about 6 links), meat taken out of the casings
- 1 bunch rapini blanched (see Sautéed Rapini recipe) and cut into 2 inch pieces
In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta until al dente - slightly firm to the bite.
White the water comes to a boil and as the pasta is cooking, cook the sausage: in a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat and add garlic and sausages until browned and cooked.
Toss in blanched rapini and drained pasta, make sure everything is well coated in the oil and mixed together.
Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with parmesan cheese.
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