Broken Pasta with Sausage (Party) Sauce
Does this title make sense? No.
Am I ever gonna be famous with those titles? Certainly not.
Thank God images can speak a thousand words better than me. Thanks images!
So, I had an urge to make a sausage ragu the other day. I sat down, put some music and rained down some thoughts on how to do it without making an Italian ragu nor a French one. Yes they are two separate things which very very simply put, #Ragu (Italian version) is a tomato based #sauce with ground or minced meat (e.g.Bolognesse) and #Ragout (French version) is a slow cooked stew with or without meat. They share a common trait though. They are both brilliant! So back to mine more brilliant recipe, I decided to approach the Italian way more than the French. The first challenge is to find some suitable sausages. You don't need the packaged ones but the Village style #sausages created in your local meat market. Find one or two big sausages. I would choose those infused with herbs and maybe a bit of spice in them. Got them? Nice, bring them home and de-skin them because the outer membrane is not needed at all.
Bring yourself a nice big casserole with thick base and add 3 tbsp of olive oil. Bring the naked sausages in and start breaking them in small pieces with your wooden spatula or a potato masher.
Be prepared to do some hand work here by pressing and pressing and pressing again. If you use potato masher, enjoy yourself cleaning it afterwards. Fun times!
The smaller they get the better it will be at the end. Mine didn't get very small because I was bored and tired at pressing them down at five minutes mark, but there is a reason this blog is called "The Hungry Sloth" and not "The Energetic Hamster" or "The Happy Dolphin". By the time you are finished mashing the sausage, you would have the right type of odor (awww, this reminded me Hodor... poor soul! Martin you b@st@rd! Anyhow.) and the sound that tells that they are now sauteing. Add a minced #clove of garlic for good luck, wait a minute, get some more aromas and give it a shot of white wine to get some extra flavor. A tip that I usually give, mostly to my wife because no one ever asks me for tips anyway, is to cook with wine that you would drink. Don't have separate bottles of cooking and drinking #wine but just the one you enjoy drinking and use it for both reasons. You will see that it can only add to your cooking.
Wait for a minute or two for the alcohol to evaporate and add 200 ml of #marinara sauce. If you don't have readied marinara sauce, it's not a problem. Use some mashed canned tomatoes, add some #thyme and you are set. At the same time add 150 ml of heavy #cream and stir until is is perfectly combined and you have orange color in your pot. Here is the trick and the mash up of the two ragus. We were making the Italian way so far. Let's turn up to the French ragout now by playing with time. Let it have a first boil in high heat and then put it to low. From that stage you can leave it up to one hour to slow cook. It obviously needs some stirring and addition of pasta water from time to time but be careful not to exaggerate. Add some salt, some pepper, a bit of thyme and enjoy some wine as your food matures.
While searching my cabinet for pasta, I found an open box I had with lasagne. You know those square pasta appropriate for oven. And I said to my self (What a wonderful woooooorld!!!!!) why let them age in here and not use it now. So, I took them out, I broke them with my hands in big unshaped pieces and boiled them.
Last step before merging our two pots in one, is to drain some red canned beans and add them to the sauce 10 minutes before taking the ragu(ish) out of heat. They can offer some more flavor, a bit of color and the finest addition of making everyone think you know exactly what you are doing in the kitchen. Except if you are alone where you can add it because it's just nice.
From this point you can choose if you want to drain the pasta, or just bring them from their pot to the sauce pot directly. I drained them for reasons I can't recall, and then I added them to the sauce. Watch carefully how you stir while you try to mix it up, because that kind of pasta is not created for hard work. It is made to be sat idle until everything is done around it. Just like my ex. To avoid destroying pasta into litle pieces that can't get caught with fork later, either mix them the chef way by tossing them into the air with just the pot, or put the wooden spatula on the bottom and gently push from one side of the pot to the other. This needs to be done a couple of time until everything is mixed up and all is blended together. Serve it in a plate, grate some cheese on top and have another glass of wine because you deserve it.
Experiment, play and enjoy your food.
400 gr random pasta
2 big Village style sausages
2 gloves of garlic
3 tbsp olive oil
a shot of white wine
200-250 ml marinara sauce or just canned tomatoes
150 ml Heavy cream
3 tbsp canned Red Beans
Salt and pepper
Grated cheese of your liking (both type and amount)