Print Recipe

Orecchiette with Sausage and Cherry Tomatoes Recipe

A perfect pasta dish that easy to prepare and a favorite in our house.
Prep Time6 mins
Cook Time24 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Pasta
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 pound orecchiette
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¾ pound sweet Italian sausage without casing
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes washed and halved
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 ounces aged provolone cheese shredded (I used Parmesan)

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the orecchiette pasta until al dente, but be sure to reserve ¾ cup of the pasta water to help make the sauce.
  • While the pasta is cooking, heat up a tablespoon of olive oil in a large sauté or frying pan large enough to hold the pasta and sauce. When the oil is hot, add the sausage in 1 inch pieces and cook until browned on all sides and cooked through. This should take about 8 minutes. Transfer the sausage to the plate lined with paper towel.
  • Add another 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to the pan, raise the heat to medium high and as soon as it gets hot, add the tomatoes and crushed red pepper.
  • While the tomatoes are cooking, use the back of a slotted spoon to press down on them until they are slightly softened. This should take about 5 minutes.
  • Now add the reserved pasta water, scrape up any brown bits of sausage and cook over medium heat until the liquid is reduced by half. Keep using the back of a slotted spoon to crush the tomatoes. This should all take about 6 minutes.
  • Add the pasta back to the pan along with the reserved sausage and the remaining tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Mix this all-together using your slotted spoon until the pasta is coated with sauce and olive oil.
  • Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the cheese and serve right away in warm pasta bowls along with any side dishes.

Notes

We served steamed broccoli and a nice green salad. I also had some extra grated Parmesan cheese on the table in case anybody wanted more.
This recipe will be added to my list of quick and easy recipes that I would serve again to my family or to a group of friends.
Adapted from Marc Vetri’s new cookbook Rustic Italian Food