Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Orecchiette with Sausage, Escarole and Beans in a Creamy Garlic Sauce

I have several friends and family members who have told me that they just cannot get into whole grain pasta.  They like the "real" stuff.  So they eat regular white pasta only one day a week.

We eat pasta about one night a week, too.  I do like the whole grain pastas (hubby Dan tolerates them).  Once every other week I make us the "real" stuff.  When I do, I try to come up with something that isn't all that bad for us.  Okay, once and a while we splurge with a traditional spaghetti and meatballs, but there are lots of things you can do with pasta that give it a healthier slant-

-- like this dish:  It's orecchiette pasta (little ears), with sausage, escarole, and white cannellini beans, tossed in a creamy garlic sauce. 

I'll confess, I took a little help from the store tonight.  Sometimes you need to do that on a busy weeknight.  Because I used the store-bought sauce mix, I didn't add any extra salt to the dish. 

Trade-offs equal a healthier you!

Serves 4.

Here we go - 


1/2 lb. orecchiette pasta, cooked per package directions
1 tbs. olive oil
1/2 lb. hot sausage or hot turkey sausage, removed from casing
1 large bunch escarole, washed and chopped
Pinch or two of freshly ground nutmeg, more to taste
1 can (15 ounces) cannnellini beans
1 packet Knorr ® brand Garlic and Herb Sauce*
1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)
1 cup 2% milk (1 1/2 cups if not using the wine)
1 tbs. butter
Freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
Sprinkle or two of Paprika


Cook pasta per package directions and keep warm.

In a large skillet, add the oil and the sausage.  Crumble the sausage using a wooden spoon.  Brown evenly and remove to a bowl and keep warm.

In the same pan, add the escarole in batches.  Wilt and add the fresh nutmeg. 

Add the cannellini beans and return the sausage to the pan. Cook for about two or three minutes until warmed through.  Turn heat off.  Cover the skillet to keep warm.

Whisk together the wine (if using), the milk and the Knoor® sauce.  Add to medium sauce pan along with the pat of butter.  Bring to boil and reduce to simmer; whisk sauce until thickened.

Add the cooked pasta to the skillet along with the sausage, escarole and beans.  Add the sauce and toss.  Plate and serve immediately topped with Pecorino Romano cheese and paprika.

Enjoy and see you soon!

*No product was supplied to blogger and not an endorsement.

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