Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Pasta with sausage, grape tomatoes and olives

My idea was to take a basic veggie-pasta dish and spice it up with a little chicken sausage and green olives. It's easy to leave out the sausage if you want to keep it vegetarian. But we liked the peppery zip that the sausage added along with the saltiness of a few chopped olives. (My husband paused for a couple of seconds to pronounce ir "an excellent dish, by the way," then returned to chowing down.)

Farfalle with Sausage, Grape Tomatoes, Broccoli and Olives
Serves 2

3 chicken sausages (about 6-8 ounces), sliced thickly
2 T olive or canola oil
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 pint grape tomatoes, sliced in half lengthwise
1 teaspoon oregano leaves
2 cups steamed broccoli florets
3 T chopped green olives
1/4 cup vegetable stock or water
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups farfalle or other pasta shapes, cooked according to package directions and drained
Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sausage and cook, stirring, until sausage begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes to coat garlic with oil.
Add tomatoes and oregano, Cover and cook until tomatoes begin to release their juice, about 3 minutes.
Add broccoli, olives and stock or water, stirring well. Season with salt and pepper, cover and let heat through, about 2 minutes.
Stir in pasta, adding more water or stock if the mixture seems too dry. When dish is hot, remove to a large bowl and serve immediately, passing cheese at the table.

This combination of flavors pairs well with many types of wine, both red and white. We poured a light-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon that we liked fine with it, although that's an unorthodox choice.

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