02 February 2016

Italian Drunken Noodles

This fast and easy recipe is slightly sweet from the caramelized onion and pepper, earthy and boozy from the wine, and oily from the...well, oil.  What more could you want on a dark winter's night?

Italian Drunken Noodles

Serves 4

1 lb. pasta (stick or shape, whatever you like)
1 cup broccoli florets
Olive oil
2 spicy Italian sausage links, casings removed (I used veggie sausage by Field Roast)
4 oz. white mushrooms, washed and sliced
1 small onion, quartered and sliced thinly
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
½ teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 orange bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, pressed through garlic press
½ cup dry red wine
1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
Grated Parmesan cheese for serving

Bring a large, well-salted pot of water to boil.  Cook the pasta al dente according to package directions, adding the broccoli in the last 4-5 minutes to cook until crisp-tender. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, place a large, heavy-bottom pan or over medium-low heat; add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and once the oil is hot, add the sliced onion and bell pepper and allow it to caramelize and become golden for roughly 15 minutes or so, stirring occasionally. Increase the heat to medium, add the mushrooms, and crumble the sausage into the pan in small chunks, allowing it to brown in the oil for a few moments on each side; once the crumbled sausage is browned, add the salt, dried herbs, and cracked black pepper, and stir to combine. Next, add in the garlic, and once it becomes aromatic, add in the wine and allow it to reduce for a 3-4 minutes. Add the diced tomatoes with their juice and stir to combine; allow it to gently simmer for about 3-4 minutes to blend the flavors, then turn the heat off; to finish the sauce, drizzle in another 1-2 tablespoons of the olive oil to create a silky, rich. Stir in the cooked pasta and coat thoroughly with the sauce.  Garnish individual plates with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.