This one pot pasta dish with sausage, kale and white beans is hearty, warming and satisfying… perfect for a cold winter night! Of course, winter is drawing to an end (or it better be, at least!) so I figure I should hurry up and get this recipe up on the blog while we’re all still in the mood to see some comfort food.
I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of cooking an entire pasta dish in one pot but it wasn’t until a few months ago that Matt and I actually tried this technique for ourselves. It turns out that there’s nothing particularly hard about making a one pot meal… you simply layer in each ingredient as you go. First you brown the meat, then throw in the onions and beans, toss in a little garlic, add broth, water and uncooked pasta, then add in your kale in two batches… the first to cook down into the dish and the remainder to add a little bite and pop of color. Easy! Thanks to the cooked-down white beans, the resulting dish has a creamy, thick, almost stew-like consistency that is very different from a normal “two pot” recipe where the pasta is cooked separately in boiling water.
Matt and I have been making variations of this pasta almost every week this winter. Sometimes we use spinach instead of kale or we throw in steamed broccoli along with the greens. Feel free to change up the meat (hot sausage adds a nice kick) and the pasta… we’ve had delicious results with gemelli, fusilli lunghi, rigatoni and penne.
One Pot Pasta with Sausage, Kale and White Beans (serves 4; recipe adapted from Cool Spring CSA)
You will need…
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 lb. ground Sweet Italian Sausage, ground (remove casings if using normal sausage)
1 Yellow Onion, chopped
2 – 15 oz. cans Cannellini Beans, drained and rinsed
5-6 cloves Garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons Dried Oregano
Pinch of Crushed Red Pepper
3 cups Chicken Broth
2 cups Water
1 lb. Pasta (we used Gemelli this time)
1 bunch Kale, washed, stems removed, and roughly chopped
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
Salt and Pepper, to taste
In a large (6+ qt.) dutch oven brown the crumbled sausage with 1-2T olive oil over medium-high heat. When the sausage is cooked through, add the onion and beans and saute, stirring occassionally, until onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano and red pepper and stir for 30 seconds or until garlic is fragrant.
Pour in the chicken broth, water, pasta and half of the chopped kale and stir well to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and cover with a tightly fitted lid. Allow the mixture to cook undisturbed for 6 minutes, then layer in the remaining kale on top of the pasta without stirring. Recover and cook for another 4 minutes. Remove the lid, stir, and taste test a piece of pasta. (My favorite part!)
Allow the dish to continue to simmer uncovered for another few minutes until the pasta is cooked to your desired consistency. Remove from heat, stir in the cheese, drizzle in a tablespoon or so of olive oil and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve and enjoy!