Every new season needs a really, really good new pasta dish. And this spicy paccheri with sausage & greens is it. Large, tube-like pasta tossed in a white wine butter sauce, full of spicy Italian sausage, wilted green chard, and lots of pecorino cheese. Trust me, this is a cold weather pasta that you will fall in love with.
This week has been all about catching up on writing recipes. So far, I’ve shared these apple crumb bars and chipotle & pomegranate braised chicken tacos…AND I’m planning to write all night long to catch up. I definitely cook way more than I can keep up with, but hey, it’s just what comes naturally to me.
Anyways, I did plan a day for cooking this week and didn’t really go into it with an idea of what I was making. And then something about pasta for lunch just sounded…right.
The result? This spicy paccheri that I am officially declaring my pasta of the fall season (and probably the winter, too)!
Oh my goodness. First of all, if you haven’t ever tried paccheri, it’s one of my favorite shapes of pasta. Basically huge tubes that have little ridges on them to trap all of the sauce. They’re a lot of fun and make for a beautiful presentation.
I wanted a little heat so used spicy Italian sausage and red finger peppers. The heat is subtle, but if definitely carries throughout the dish in a really lovely way. The greens and pecorino just fit in perfectly with this flavor profile. All of these ingredients are speckled through the most luscious white wine butter sauce, that gets thickened with pasta water, and picks up all of the sausage and pepper flavors.
And then there’s the roasted hazelnuts and fried rosemary that honestly just tie it together so perfectly.
I am in love. And I hope you have the same feelings after taking that first bite. Enjoy!
- olive oil, as needed
- ½ lb raw spicy Italian sausage
- ¾ lb paccheri
- 1 large sprig rosemary
- 2 red finger peppers (or fresno), thinly sliced
- 1 cup white wine
- ½ cup pasta water (from cooking the paccheri)
- 1 bunch green chard, stemmed & roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp butter
- ¾ cup grated pecorino cheese
- ½ cup roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- more grated pecorino to garnish
- 1. Heat a large, heavy-bottom pot over medium heat.
- 2. Add enough olive oil to coat the bottom. When the oil is hot, add the spicy Italian sausage. Use a wooden spoon to break apart the sausage into little pieces as it begins to brown. Continue to cook the sausage until golden brown and fully cooked.
- 3. Meanwhile, add the paccheri to a large pot of salted, boiling water and cook 3 minutes less than the package instructions.
- 4. When the sausage is cooked through, use a slotted spoon to transfer it to a plate.
- 5. In the same pot, add the rosemary to the hot oil. Fry the rosemary for a minute or two until crispy. Remove and reserve.
- 6. Add the peppers to the oil and sauté for a minute or two. Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Retrieve ½ cup of pasta water from the pasta pot and add it in with the wine. Let the liquid come to a boil, reduce the heat, and let simmer for 3-4 minutes until slightly thickened.
- 7. When the pasta is done cooking, drain it and add it to the pot. Allow it to cook for a minute in the liquid, stirring often.
- 8. Stir in the green chard and let wilt. Add the butter and let melt.
- 9. Gradually add in the grated pecorino cheese, stirring slowly until it melts into the sauce.
- 10. Taste the pasta and season with more salt if needed. Plate the pasta, spooning the sauce right over top. Garnish with the roasted hazelnuts and lots of pecorino cheese. Crumble the fried rosemary on top to finish.