Kale and sausage pasta sauce.

SERVES 6

Halliday - - Food & Wine -

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.

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