Until this weekend (the weekend AFTER I made this recipe, of course), I had never seen orecchiette pasta in a grocery store. It was always a great source of personal irritation, as I'm the girl who thinks a margarita doesn't taste as good unless it's served in a margarita glass, wine in a wine glass, and so forth. And while I deal with the pasta I'm given (with this recipe, it was usually "Trumpets"), I always yearned for this mythical orecchiette. I will have to make this again soon just so I can take advantage of using this elusive pasta.
This is a recipe I've made many, many times. There is nothing I don't love about it. It's incredibly easy, spicy (dependent upon your use of sausage), and salty. It makes me drool to think about it, and I'm getting ready to go to sleep. In sum: This recipe is really, really ridiculously good tasting.
Orecchiette with Sausage, Peppers, and Feta (from Cooking Light)
-8 ounces uncooked orecchiette ("little ear" pasta; about 2 cups--or whatever thick-ish and short pasta you can get your hands on)
-1 teaspoon olive oil
-3 cups (1/4-inch-thick) slices red bell pepper, each cut in half crosswise
-1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
-8 ounces turkey Italian sausage (I like using the Hot Italian turkey sausage)
-1 teaspoon dried oregano
-1 garlic clove, minced
-3/4 cup (3 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
-1/4 cup sliced pitted kalamata olives
-1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Cook the orecchiette according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain the pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid.
2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bell pepper and 1/4 teaspoon salt; sauté 2 minutes. Remove casings from the sausage. Add sausage, oregano, and garlic to pan; cook 4 minutes or until sausage is done, stirring to crumble sausage. Add pasta, reserved cooking liquid, 1/4 teaspoon salt, cheese, olives, and black pepper; cook for 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring frequently.
-Calories: 393, Fat: 12.8g, Carbs: 48.6g, Protein: 21.6g