Rotini with Sausage and Escarole

Wow.  It is finally Thursday night.

I have a busy day planned tomorrow (mostly errands, laundry, gym, and studying), but for tonight–it feels so good to be done with one more week of this summer session.  It has been very rough going to the same three classes all week for waaay too many hours at a time.  This weekend is going to go by too fast.  I’m already dreading going back.

Exciting stuff happened in CSA box number 3–see for yourself:

We had just run out of onions, so it was perfect timing.  Fritz also hates cilantro with a burning passion, but I see a lot of salsa and other Mexican delights for myself in the near future.

It was also my first time having escarole.  I took one bite fresh out of the box and spit it out–so bitter!  Though some people eat it uncooked in salads, I will not be that type of person.  Cooked, on the other hand, it was fine–and this pasta dish I found online turned out so much better than I expected!

Rotini with Sausage and Escarole  (original recipe here; serves 6-8)

  • 1 box whole-wheat pasta (mine was 14 oz)
  • 1 t olive oil
  • 2 onions, or one onion and the green tops in my case, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lb sweet Italian sausage
  • big bunch escarole, torn into small pieces (about 6 C)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parmesan cheese to garnish
  • red pepper flakes to taste

Cook the whole-wheat pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside, reserving 1 C of the cooking water.

Meanwhile, saute the onions, bell pepper, and garlic in the olive oil until soft, about five minutes.  Remove the casings from the sausage and add, breaking apart and cooking through until crumbly.

Combine the sausage mixture with the pasta in a large pan, adding the escarole and reserved cooking water.  Cover for a minute or two until the escarole begins to wilt, then stir it into the noodles and continue to cook until the escarole is tender.

Season with salt and pepper to taste, then top with parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes.

Fritz and I both LOVED this pasta dish.  I definitely wasn’t expecting it to turn into a crowd favorite, since I just quickly grabbed the recipe off the internet and tossed it together.  But it was seriously good.  Flavorful and super-satisfying (but still packed with my CSA veggies!).

Fritz called this “a gourmet Hamburger Helper, but better”, which you can only realize is a compliment when it’s taken into consideration that Fritz would eat only HH every day for the rest of his life, scorning all fruits and vegetables and eventually dying from scurvy and/or malnutrition.

I consider it the highest of all compliments, really.

Fritz’s parents are coming to visit this weekend for Father’s day, and I’m so excited to see them!  I keep thinking up elaborate meals to make, and then realizing it’ll be more fun to just grill and hang out and not spend all of our time around a hot oven in our small kitchen.  Have a good night!


Filed under Entrees

4 responses to “Rotini with Sausage and Escarole

  1. Sarah J. Midgley

    I finally made my own peanut butter tonight and thought of you- mine turned out great! I suggest giving it a try. Used 3 C of unsalted dry roast peanuts, and cinnamon and vanilla to taste. You could also add sugar and a little salt to it, but I prefer not using those ingredients whenever possible. It took about 10-12 minutes in my food processor.

    • yum thanks! sounds awesome. I’ve only made almond butter, but my biggest problem is not having a big enough food processor! I only have a mini one…I think I need to stay on the lookout during the upcoming garage sale season 🙂

  2. Holly

    This dish looks particularly lovely! I love those box veg deliveries. I’ve only had one once when It was on a Groupon offer but they are great aren’t they!!

  3. Places and Pets

    Lauren, sounds Very Good and worth a Try.
    If you liked this one – then look up cabbage and hay on Rachael Ray’s website.
    I promise you’ll love it too.
    (not colorful – but very good also, and many have asked me where I
    got this recipe) Also a good way to keep those vegetables on your hubby’s menu.

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