Sausage and Spinach Pesto Pasta
Ingredients (Serves 3)
1. Farfalle (bow ties) or ribbon pasta – 2.5 cups
2. Olive oil – 2 tsp
3. Italian chicken sausage – 3 links ( Around 300 gm ), casings removed
4. Garlic – 3, minced
Crushed red chilly flakes – 1/2 tsp
5. Spinach – 2 handful (Around 2 cups)
6. Heavy cream – 1/2 cup
Parmesan cheese – 1/4 cup
7. Pasta cooking water – 1/4 cup (Only if required)
8. Basil pesto – 2 tbsp (Recipe below. You can also use store-bought pesto instead)
9. Salt and pepper – To taste
10. Parsley – 2 tbsp finely chopped, to garnish
11. Parmesan cheese, grated – 3 – 4 tbsp, to garnish
1. Cook the pasta according to package instructions adding salt and 1 tsp olive oil, till al dente. Right before you are ready to drain, reserve about 1/4 cup of the starchy cooking water. Drain the pasta.
2. Meanwhile heat 1 tsp olive oil in a pan at medium-high heat. Add the sausage and break them up into small pieces using the spatula. Cook for 5 – 6 minutes until they are cooked through. Add minced garlic, crushed red chilly flakes and cook for 30 seconds. Add spinach and cook for a minute until it wilts. Add 1/2 cup heavy cream and 1/4 cup parmesan cheese. Season with little salt and pepper. Bring down the heat to low. Cook for 2 minutes until it starts to becomes thick. Add 2 tbsp pesto. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes until thick. Add cooked farfalle pasta and mix well. If very thick, add 1/4 cup pasta cooking water. Season with pepper and salt, to taste. Switch off. Top with finely chopped parsley and parmesan cheese. Its super-delicious..do try it out, friends!
To remove the sausage casings easily, put them in the freezer for 1 – 1.5 hours so that they will be firmer, then cut the tip and peel off the casing. Or cut the tip of the sausage casing and squeeze out the sausage meat into pan.
Basil Pesto Recipe
- Basil leaves – 2 cups, packed
- Pine nuts or walnuts – 3 tbsp, toasted
- Lemon juice – 1.5 tbsp
- Garlic – 2 small cloves
- Extra virgin live oil – 1/2 cup
- Salt and pepper – To season
- Parmesan cheese – 3 – 4 tbsp, grated
In a food processor, add pine nuts / walnuts, chopped garlic cloves and pulse for a few times. Add basil leaves, lemon juice and blend well. Slowly add the olive oil, scrape down the sides of the food processor in between and continue blending until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Finally stir in parmesan cheese and mix well. You can store it in the refrigerator for a few weeks.