in the kitchen

in the kitchen

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Pasta w/ Kale and Sausage

Kale makes another appearance in a pasta dish with this recipe. I am enjoying cooking with kale and my family and friends seem to like it as well. Even if the health benefits were fewer, it would still be included in our diets. Although this dish with the sausage and cream is not one I would label "healthy", the kale helps a bit and I would definitely label it "tasty".
Kale and Sausage Pasta Sauce
3/4 pound Italian sausage, bulk style or removed from casings
1/2 cup sliced leek, white part only
3 cups roughly chopped kale, tough stems removed
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup cream
4 servings cooked pasta
Romano cheese for serving
In a medium size skillet, brown sausage over medium high heat, crumbling it as it cooks. Remove cooked sausage from pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. Place leeks in the pan and saute for 2 minutes. Add the chopped kale and salt and toss with tongs until kale is wilted, another minute or so. Deglaze the pan with the water, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen the fond. Return the sausage to the pan along with the vinegar. Continue cooking and stirring until water has reduced by about half. Add the cream, stir well and remove from the heat. Toss pasta with sauce and serve with grated Romano cheese.
 Hints: A mild sausage will yield a milder result than a hot Italian sausage will. Green onions can be used in place of the leek. Any pasta will do, from spaghetti to butternut squash ravioli. You could deglaze with chicken or beef stock but water works fine and the sausage doesn't need additional flavoring. Adding pine nuts or fresh basil would be great. So would diced apple and a little sage. Just like any pasta sauce, versatility is part and parcel.
This quick cooking dish means you can have dinner on the table in the time it takes to boil water and cook pasta. Hot, hearty and flavorful with a serving of veggies, it's a keeper.

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