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Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe & Sausage

Prep Time

    •    Prep time: 20 minutes
    •    Cook time: 35 minutes
    •    Yield: Serves 6


    •    1/2 pound sweet Italian pork sausages
    •    1/2 pound hot Italian pork sausages
    •    1/3 cup good olive oil
    •    6 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
    •    2 (14.5-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
    •    1/2 cup dry red wine
    •    1/4 cup tomato paste
    •    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    •    1 pound dried orecchiette pasta
    •    2 bunches broccoli rabe (2 to 2 1/2 pounds total)
    •    1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prick the sausages with a fork and place them on a sheet pan. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until just cooked through. Slice 1/2 inch thick and set aside.

  2. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven, such as Le Creuset. Add the sausage slices and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the pieces are browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and their juices, the red wine, tomato paste, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper and let the mixture simmer over low heat while you prepare the pasta and broccoli.

  3. Bring a very large pot half filled with water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon of salt. Add the pasta and cook for 9 minutes exactly. While the pasta is cooking, trim the broccoli rabe to just below the leaves and discard the stems. Cut the leafy part of the broccoli rabe crosswise in 2-inch pieces. When the pasta has cooked for 9 minutes, add the broccoli rabe to the pasta and continue cooking for 2 to 3 minutes, until the pasta is al dente and the broccoli is crisp-tender. Drain in a large colander, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid, and add the pasta and broccoli to the pot with the tomato and sausage mixture. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and 1 teaspoon of salt. If the pasta seems dry, add some of the reserved cooking liquid. Taste for seasonings, and serve hot with extra Parmesan on the side.

This great family recipe is thanks to Food Network Recipes at


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