Sometimes dealing with leftover food is a mental chore because it can be hard to put together ingredients that have already been cooked. My solution is always a plate of pasta that transforms into something even better than when it was originally cooked.
The word orecchiette comes from its shape, which is “small ears” in Italian. The depression in the middle makes catching the sauce better, thus you get to have even tastier forkfuls of pasta. Because of this and its chewiness, orecchiette is one of my favorite pasta shapes to use. Whenever I cook sausages, I tend to use orecchiette more than the other shapes because they taste so good together.
I often have leftover sausages. Whether they are grilled or baked, I always put them in a pasta dish the following day. Just remove the casing that holds them together, crumble, then sauté them in extra virgin olive oil. That way, you revive the flavors and you can add other ingredients like the bottled or grilled peppers that I used in this dish. It’s really easy and you will be rewarded with a delicious dish afterwards.
Orecchiette with sausage and peppers recipe
- 7 ounces orecchiette
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 2 cups cooked sausages, casings removed and coarsely chopped
- 1-1/2 cups bottled grilled or roasted peppers, coarsely chopped
- Ground pepper
- Sprigs of lemon thyme or regular thyme
- Over medium to high heat, bring a pot of water to a boil. When the water boils, add some salt, then add the orecchiette. Follow the cooking time indicated on the packaging.
- Meantime, while waiting for the water for the pasta to boil, cook the sauce.
- Over medium heat, in a large saucepan with extra virgin olive oil, lightly toast the garlic and the sausages.
- Add the peppers. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for another 5-7 minutes.
- Turn off the fire and cover to keep it warm and wait for the orecchiette to cook. Turn on the fire again when the orecchiette is ready to be mixed with it.
- When the pasta is cooked, turn on the fire to medium then add the pasta to the saucepan with the sausages and peppers.
- Garnish with the lemon thyme and drizzle some fresh extra virgin olive oil.
- Serve while hot.