I've been on a serious kale kick lately. If I see it on a restaurant menu, there's a good chance I'll order it. But I very rarely (read: never) cook with it at home. I think I've purchased kale only once for this Italian Sausage, Potato and Kale Soup. I'm also really into one-pot meals, specifically when they involve cooking pasta in a flavorful broth. This One Pan Orecchiette with Sausage and Kale combines my two latest obsessions into one delicious meal.
Looking at the pictures of this meal made my mouth water and the end result did not disappoint. I made a few minor adjustments to the cooking method but otherwise I followed the recipe. Katie and I both cleaned our plates in record time. I had the leftovers for lunch today and they were sensational, dare I say better than the first day. I needed to add a smidge of water just to loosen the sauce a bit, but this reheated beautifully.
Not that I have any nutrition background whatsoever, but as far as our personal eating habits, this is a pretty awesome meal. You've got grains, protein and veggies covered. The pasta is minimal (less than half a pound, thankyouverymuch) and plenty of healthy kale. And a bonus - the Italian sausage we buy is actually made from turkey instead of pork. The best part is, you can't taste the difference. We've served this sausage to countless people who had no clue they were eating turkey instead of pork.
One Pan Orecchiette with Sausage and Kale
As seen on For the Love of Cooking
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow or white onion, diced
1 lb mild ground Italian sausage (if you buy links, remove casings)
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed well
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes, or more to taste
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 quart chicken broth
6oz (weight) orecchiette pasta
Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
4oz (weight) kale, chopped
Parmesan, shaved or grated
Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally until soft and golden, about 5-6 minutes. Stir sausage into the onions along with the Italian seasoning, oregano, crushed fennel seed, red pepper flakes and garlic. Cook and stir until sausage is broken up and just browned, about 3-4 minutes.
Pour the chicken broth into the sausage mixture and bring to a boil. Be sure to scrape up the browned bits off of the bottom of the pan. Once the broth is boiling, add the orecchiette pasta. Cook, stirring every so often to prevent the pasta from sticking together or to the bottom of the pan, about 15 minutes. Taste and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, if needed. Be sure to taste before adding any salt since the chicken broth will be salty.
Stir the kale into sausage mixture until it wilts, about 1-2 minutes. Ladle pasta into bowls and top with Parmesan.