This was one of those dishes that was supposed to be something else. Wednesday is officially Experiment Night. My mother and used to reserve Saturday for that, but for my schedule, Wednesday is better. When I reread the recipe for what it was supposed to be, I realized that it was missing something I wanted – meat. I had a made some quick adjustments and came up with something we really liked. It’s hot and spicy, and quick to get together, perfect for a weeknight.
This recipe calls for pine nuts. If you can’t find them or don’t like them, just omit them. If you do get pine nuts, be sure and store extra in the refrigerate to keep them from going rancid. You don’t want to pay a lot of money and then have them taste bad. Find out more about Pine Nuts on Wikipedia.
Let’s Make Penne al’Arrabbiata with Sausage and Red Peppers
- 1/2 pound Italian Sausage
- 2 sweet red peppers
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon anchovy paste
- 3 cloves garlic chopped
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1/2 cup frozen spinach
- 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
- 1/2 pound penne pasta
- 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 3 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- Roast the peppers directly over the stovetop flame of a gas oven, until they are blackened on all sides. Transfer to a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let steam for 20 minutes. Peel the peppers and chop them into 1-inch pieces.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the sausage. Break it up as you go along. It should be fully cooked by the time to get to the next step.
- Add the anchovy paste and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the chopped red peppers, then add the red wine. Add the frozen spinach, breaking it up as you go. Boil until the pan is nearly dry. Stir in the chili flakes. Remove from the heat.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt, and drop in the pasta. Cook for about 9 minutes or until the pasta is tender. You will be cooking it further in the sauce. Drain, reserving some of the pasta water. Return the sauce to medium-high heat and stir in the pasta. Cook for 5 minutes, to allow the flavors to mingle. Add a spoonful of pasta water if the sauce looks too dry. Remove from the heat.
- Season with salt and pepper. Add the pine nuts and parsley and toss well. Tip into a large serving bowl, garnish with an over-generous grating of Parmigiano-Reggiano and serve immediately.
- Serve with a nice salad and garlic bread. Enjoy!