Wednesday, March 6, 2013

spicy italian sausage & peppers pasta

when i was growing up italian sausage and peppers were a favorite treat. frequently, when my sisters and i spent the weekend at my grandparent's home, my grandmother would take us to an italian deli called claros after church on sundays. we usually ordered hot italian sausage and peppers sandwiches for lunch...and i have an aunt (last name donatelli) who makes grilled sausage, onions and peppers as an appetizer for most family parties. i thought creating a pasta dish out of these ingredients would be a delicious idea.

when i learned it is "comforting pasta" week at food network's comfort food feast i decided this would be the perfect recipe to share as it serves up family memories along with the pasta.  what is more comforting than that?  gran...aunt linda...beloved family...this is for you.

spicy italian sausage & peppers pasta
1 lb hot italian sausage (use mild if you prefer)
1 yellow onion, cut in half and then sliced lengthwise
1 green pepper and 1 red pepper, both cut in half and then sliced lengthwise
4 tbsp good extra virgin olive oil, plus additional for drizzling
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 lb fusilli (or any short pasta you like)
kosher salt
grey salt
freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp good balsamic pepper
freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese

cut sausage into 1 inch pieces and remove casing. saute in large skillet for 5 minutes. drain. add onion and saute an additional 5 minutes. pour off any drippings but do not scrape pan. add 2 tbsp olive oil and the peppers and cook uncovered for approximately ten minutes until sausage is cooked through. add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until garlic not let garlic burn... scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan..(note, if you use hot italian sausage and the red pepper flakes, this dish will be very spicy..which i love...if you do not, either use mild sausage, or eliminate the pepper flakes...)
meanwhile bring a large pot of water to a boil. generously salt water with the kosher salt (water should taste a bit like sea water) and add the pasta. cook fusilli until al dente (firm to the bite)...start checking after 10 minutes. when pasta is ready, remove from pot with strainer and add to sausage pan. add 1/2 cup pasta water, remaining 2 tbsp olive oil and salt/pepper to taste. stir to combine. turn off heat, add a splash of balsamic vinegar, stir, taste and correct seasonings if needed. serve immediately with plenty of freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese..
do you have a favorite pasta recipe you would like featured? feel free to post or link in the comments section of this post. and please check out my cheddar cheese and roasted garlic version over at my sister blog napa farmhouse 1885.

it is "comforting pasta" week at food network's "comfort food feast". check out the other delicious sounding recipes from my blogger friends:
The Cultural Dish: Pasta Carbonara
The Sensitive Epicure: Individual Goat Cheese Mac & Cheese (Gluten-Free, Lactose-Free)
Feed Me Phoebe: Green Eggs and Ham: Pasta Carbonara With Zucchini and Crispy Prosciutto
Red or Green?: Spicy Italian Sausage and Peppers Pasta
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Pasta With Apple-Sage Sausage, White Beans and Greens
Jeanette's Healthy Living: A Healthier Crock-Pot Meat Lovers Pasta Sauce
Dishin & Dishes: Skillet Gnocchi
The Heritage Cook: Macaroni and Cheese for Everyone
Devour: Low-Key Lasagna
Virtually Homemade: Gluten-Free Macaroni and Cheese With Crispy Bacon
Cooking With Elise: Scallops and Linguini
Big Girls, Small Kitchen: Swiss Chard Lasagna
And Love It Too: Baked Spaghetti With Zucchini Noodles
FN Dish: The Most Satisfying Pasta Dishes

i have started sharing my taos experiences on my newest blog "california girl in taos". please visit and let me know what you think.


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