This Cavatelli With Sausage And Broccoli Rabe is Italian comfort food at its best. Spicy sausage and bitter broccoli rabe are sauteed with tender cavatelli pasta in a garlicky, cheesy sauce.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, sliced
Kosher salt to taste
2 pounds broccoli rabe, stems trimmed
12 ounces cavatelli pasta
4 large cloves garlic, minced
½ cup grated Italian cheese
1 cup ricotta cheese, optional
Shaved Italian cheese for a garnish
In a large skillet over medium heat, add the oil and the sliced sausage.
Cook, turning occasionally until browned and crisp around the edges – about 15 minutes.
Remove the sausage to a plate. Reserve the pan drippings. Set aside.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a full rolling boil. Add a handful of Kosher salt to the pot and return to a boil.
Toss in the broccoli rabe and cook, uncovered, until the vegetable is bright green and just tender, but still a bit crisp – about 5 minutes.
Use tongs to remove the broccoli rabe to a fine mesh colander. Chop into bite-size pieces.
Add the pasta to the boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente – about 12 minutes.
Meanwhile, in the skillet, warm the pan drippings. Add the garlic and cook until it is golden brown – about 5 minutes.
Add the broccoli rabe and sausage to the pan. Toss with the garlic and cook until warm.
Drain the pasta in a colander, but reserve the cooking liquid.
Add the pasta with ¼ cup of the pasta water to the skillet.
Toss with the sausage and broccoli rabe.
Stir in the grated cheese. Stir vigorously until the cheese is melted and a creamy sauce has formed.
Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl.
Top the pasta with a mound of ricotta cheese.
Sprinkle with the shaved Italian cheese.
Serve the pasta warm with a spoonful of the ricotta cheese, if using.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Category: Main Dish - Pasta
- Method: Saute, boil
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: cavatelli with sausage and broccoli rabe, Italian food, pasta, Italian sausage, broccoli rabe, comfort food, Italian comfort food