Sep 7 10
by cara
at 9:12 PM
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Bowtie Pasta with Spicy Sausage and Kale

I don’t cook with Italian sausage very often.  Maybe once or twice a year.  The Picky Apple and I both find the spices of Italian sausage, particularly the fennel/anise taste, a bit much.  But every once in a while, I feel like giving Italian sausage another chance.  I actually liked it in this dish.  Maybe it was the particular type of sausage I purchased, but I think it had more to do with the combination of flavors here.  This is a sauce-less pasta dish that can also be served cold (though I think my preference is to eat this warm).

Bowtie Pasta with Spicy Sausage and Kale

inspired by Everyday Italian by Giada de Laurentis


  • 1 bunch of kale, stalks trimmed and torn into bite size pieces
  • 12 ounces mini bow tie pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Bring a large pot of water to boil.  Add the kale and cook until crisp-tender, about 1 minute.  Strain the kale, reserving all the cooking liquid.  Set the kale aside.  Cook the pasta in the same pot of boiling water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes.  Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, in a large, heavy skillet, heat the oil over a medium flame.  Add the sausage and cook, breaking up with a spoon, until the sausage is brown and juices form, about 8 minutes.  Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add the kale and toss to coat.  Add the pasta and enough reserved cooking liquid, 1/4 cup at a time, to moisten.  Stir in the Parmesan cheese, salt to taste, and pepper into the pasta mixture.  Transfer to pasta bowls and serve.

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