Monday, May 20, 2013

Chicken Sausage & Pesto Pasta

You may have noticed by now that we love chicken sausage.  It's really versatile and complements so many dishes, especially pasta.  Originally this recipe was from Real Simple Magazine.  I have made this dish tons of times and it is really good.  I always make some changes to it, primarily because I can never find orechiette pasta in Culpeper and sometimes I like to use different vegetables.  Tonight I used asparagus because we had some from our CSA portion with more on the way in this week's portion.

Ingredients (for my version)
1 pkg spiral pasta
1 pkg Italian chicken sausage - I used chipotle & monterrey jack flavored
1 T olive oil
1/3 C pesto
1/2 C grated parmesan & romano
1 bunch asparagus, chopped - you can also use peas or green beans or any combination of these
  1. Boil large pot of water for pasta and cook pasta according to package instructions.  If using asparagus add this into the pot about 7 minutes before the pasta will be finished.  We had purple asparagus which is much thicker.  If you use thin asparagus it may need less time.  If using peas or green beans you can add this much later too, 2 minutes or so before pasta is finished.  Reserve 1 C starchy pasta water when finished. 
  2. Cut chicken sausage into 1 inch pieces and brown in a skillet with olive oil.  When completed, set aside.  Depending on the size of your pieces this will usually take 6-7 minutes.

  3. Mix the sausage, pesto and cheese into the pot with your pasta and asparagus.  If needed add pasta water slowly.  I usually end up adding about a 1/2 C just to help blend in the parmesan and romano but didn't need any today because the noodles were still a little watery when I added them.
Now it's  time for me to head to work.  These 2 will probably spend the rest of the night like this.

 photo dinner-signature_zpsccb424d2.jpg

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