If there’s sausage + pasta, you can count me in. Actually, if there’s pasta on the plate, you can count me in too. This is a recipe where it’s super easy to substitute whatever you happen to have in the fridge. Any vegetable such as eggplant, zucchini or whatever else you have on hand that seems like it would be a good combination.
The sweet or spicy Italian sausage is the foundation of flavor and is distributed throughout every bite in the light cream sauce that coats the pasta and veggies. Everything but the pasta is cooked in one skillet. A little bit of the pasta water helps cook the broccolini and red peppers quickly.
You can cook the sausage and veggies while the pasta cooks, so it comes together pretty quick. Since there’s only a small amount of cream, most of it gets absorbed by the pasta after it is infused with the sausage and red pepper flavor. So good.
Hit it with a big handful of freshly torn basil right before serving to keep that vibrant green color alive.
- 8 oz Pasta such as Casareccia
- 1 lb sweet or spicy Italian sausage removed from casing
- 2 garlic cloves sliced thin
- 1 small bunch broccolini or broccoli coarsely chopped
- 1 red pepper diced
- 1 ripe tomato diced
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- grated Parmesan cheese
- fresh torn basil
- Cook the pasta al dente and reserve 1/2 cup of the water.
- Heat a little canola oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, and add the sausage. Break it into bite-size pieces using the back of a wooden spoon and continue to cook until it starts to brown and is mostly cooked through.
- Add the chopped broccolini, diced red pepper and garlic. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the vegetables are tender, stirring frequently.
- Deglaze the pan with a few tablespoons of pasta water. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the diced tomatoes and warm through. Add cream and bring to a simmer. Add the cooked pasta, remove from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese.
- Taste for seasoning. Add the torn basil right before serving.