Thursday, March 11, 2010

Weeknight Inspiration: Orecchiete with Sausage and Spinach

This dish was easy and yummy.  I took inspiration from Giada's recipe on Food Network here but changed it up based on what I like to eat and the ingredients I had on hand.  For example, I already had spinach so I substituted that for the broccoli rabe.  Also, I got a kind of chicken/turkey sausage that had habanero and green chiles in it - my husband is from New Mexico so he loved it!  Here's what I did.

You'll Need:
1 onion, diced
1 pound of sausage meat (you could use chicken, turkey, reglar italian - whatever!)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 cups orecchiete pasta (or whatever shape you prefer or have on hand)
red pepper flakes (my turkey had some kick but I'd add this if I'd used a plainer kind of sausage)
parmesan or pecorino romano cheese
1 can diced tomatoes or Rotel (I used Rotel because I had it on hand but it also continued on with the New Mexican green chile theme!)
1/4 cup of red wine
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 cups uncooked baby spinach

What you do:

Sautee onion and garlic in a large, heated skillet with the olive oil.  Once translucent, add the sausage and cook until it is browned and cooked through. 

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.

Add the tomatoes or Rotel to the meat mixture.  Add the red wine and let simmer. 

Add the pasta to the water and cook until al dente (about 8 minutes).  You don't want to overcook the pasta so it won't break apart when you add it to the meat.   

Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the sausage mixture.  Right before you are ready to serve, add the spinach until it is wilted.  Season with salt and pepper.  Top with a little of the cheese.

It may seem like a lot of steps but it really was an easy and yummy dinner!

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