Kale and sausage pasta sauce.
If you can, use Italian sausages to give this sauce a more genuine Tuscan taste. They are made with 100 per cent meat, have a good fat content, are flavoured with salt and garlic, and are often used in Italian recipes as sausage meat or instead of minced meat. If you do find them, you may not need any extra garlic or salt in the recipe. We used fresh pappardelle here, but this sauce is also ideal with penne, fusilli or rigatoni.
300g cavolo nero (or other cabbage), washed, tough stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
6 quality pork sausages
(over 90% meat)
5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, peeled and lightly crushed
Fresh red chilli, sliced, to taste, or ¼ tsp dried chilli flakes
480g pappardelle or other dried pasta 3 tbsp white wine
100ml double cream (optional)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper 25g grated Parmesan
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, add the cavolo nero and cook for 5–10 minutes until soft. Drain well and set aside. When cool enough to touch, cut the leaves into shreds.
Make a shallow incision along the length of the sausages with a knife and peel away the skin. Discard the skins and crumble the meat into a large frying pan, then add the oil, garlic and chilli. Put the pan over a medium heat and cook until meat is lightly browned, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the packet instructions, and time it so the pasta will be just cooked when the sauce is ready.
Add the white wine to the sausage mixture in the frying pan and allow this to evaporate for around 5 minutes. Then add the shredded cavolo nero and stir through. Pour in the cream, if using, bring the sauce to a gentle boil and taste for seasoning (sometimes there is no need to add more salt if the sausages are already salty).
Stir the hot, drained pasta into the sauce and serve straight away with the grated Parmesan.