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Pasta, Sausage and Swiss Chard

By Chef Gretchen Fayerweather

At first this recipe seems like a lot of reading. Don't be fooled, it's quite simple. Essentially it's one pot and one skillet put together for full flavor!

4 servings   

This pasta (orecchietta) is a small round, “little-ear” shaped pasta, it can certainly be switched for a more familiar pasta shape such as fusilli, elbow, or penne, but the shape lends itself nicely to the sauce in this recipe. Give it a try!  Its fun!  

Salt and pepper to taste
¾  pound orecchiette pasta
3 tablespoon olive oil
¾  pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed (other sausages can be used, such as chorizo, brats, or even spicy Italian!)
1 bunch root vegetable, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch rounds (carrots, kohlrabi, potato)
1 bunch Swiss chard or spinach, tough stems and ribs removed, thinly sliced
1 bunch scallions (green onions or chives) chopped fine
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving  

Method of Preparation  
1. In a large pot of boiling water, cook pasta, according to package instructions.
2. Reserve 1 cup pasta water, then drain pasta and return to pot.
3. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high.
4. Add sausage and cook, breaking meat up with a spoon, until browned, 3 minutes. 5. With a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to pot with pasta.
6. Add root vegetable to the hot skillet and sauté until softened and browned, 5 minutes. Add chard or spinach and cook until wilted, another 2 minutes.
7. Transfer mixture to pasta pot and toss.
8. Add Parmesan and green onions, plus enough pasta water to create a light sauce that coats pasta; season with salt and pepper.
9. Serve with additional Parmesan on the side.

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