Thursday, May 27, 2010

Farfalle with Italian Sausage, Peas and Mushrooms

It never fails. Every day after I pick up my daughters after work, they always ask, “What’s for dinner?” The reply is usually, “Well, what would you like?” It’s really a rhetorical question as I will probably cook whatever I want/is easiest. Nonetheless, I always ask hoping that the answer will be different than the standard “Chicken nuggets!”

Well, lo and behold, last night I got a different response. This time it was, “You know what I miss mommy? I really miss the pasta you made with the sausage and the peas. It was delicious!” Her response caught me completely off-guard. Why? Because she was smoothly asking for the pasta dish without explicitly telling me to cook it. I loved how she had cleverly disguised her response into a thinly-veiled compliment. I’m sure she had a glint/twinkle in her eye when I agreed to cook it. The recipe is below. Bon appétit!

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 pound Italian sausage, removed from casing
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 ounces mushrooms, coarsely chopped
1 (10 ounce) package frozen peas, defrosted slightly
1 pound dried farfalle pasta
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan or pecorino Romano cheese

In a large pot bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil.

In a large sauté pan over high heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add Italian sausage and sauté breaking any large lumps until golden brown. Remove meat from pan and set aside. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to pan and heat. Add chopped mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until all the liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the peas and sauté for 4 minutes. Return the meat to the pan and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

When the pot of water has come to a boil, add pasta and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain in a colander. Return pasta to the pot and add the meat mixture. Combine thoroughly and gently cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Drizzle in remaining olive oil. If the mixture is dry, do not hesitate to use more olive oil if necessary. Check the seasoning. Turn off the heat and add the grated cheese. Stir well and serve in large bowl.

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