Can you tell I love pasta? Like many Collegetown Kitchen recipes, this one is more of a technique than a strict formula. Other than with the sausage, onion, and carrot; feel free to play around with the other vegetables and use up whatever you have on hand.
Contains meat, dairy, alcohol and gluten — but you could omit or swap whatever you don’t eat for something you do eat. To make vegetarian, I recommend adding Italian seasonings and red pepper flakes (as you won’t have the heat from the sausage).
Makes 4 large servings, can be stored in the fridge 3-4 days and reheated.
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 links hot italian sausage, (no, sweet will NOT do)
- 1 carrot, peeled and diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- Additional veg, prepped as needed and in small dice (such as chard stems, asparagus, corn, peas)
- Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper
- 1/2 can (6oz) beer (such as a pilsner; can substitute dry white wine or chicken stock or vegetable stock)
- 2-3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese, cream cheese, or heavy cream (optional)
- Leafy green, such as chard leaves, arugula, spinach (optional)
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, white vinegar, or champagne vinegar
- Freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese; for garnish, to taste
- 1 pound short pasta, such as orecchiette or rigatoni
- Bring a large pot of boiling water to a boil. Continue with the steps, but when it is boiling, add a generous — no, copious — amount of kosher salt.
- In a large skillet (cast iron or stainless steel), add the onion and olive oil. Cook over medium heat until they are lightly golden-brown. Use a knife to release the sausage from its casing and add the insides of the sausage to the pan. Discard the casing. Increase the heat to medium high and cook until the sausage is well browned and all the way cooked through. Use fork or spatula to break up the sausage into small pieces as it cooks.
- Add the pasta to the boiling water; set a timer for 2 minutes fewer than the package says to cook it.
- Add the rest of the vegetables to the skillet; sauté 2-3 minutes. Season with kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Add the beer and let simmer 2-3 minutes until the liquid reduces slightly. While waiting for the pasta to finish cooking (if waiting), reduce the heat to low or turn off completely.
- When the pasta is ready, use a measuring cup or ladle to reserve around 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Drain the rest of the water, and add the pasta to the skillet with the vegetables. Add the reserved pasta water. Let simmer in the sauce 1-2 minutes to finish cooking through. Over medium-low heat, add the mascarpone and leafy greens (let the mascarpone melt and the greens wilt), then the lemon juice; taste for seasoning.
- Serve topped with freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese and cracked black pepper.
Jeremy is a student at Cornell University double majoring in Spanish and Italian with significant coursework in classes such as nutrition, food science and culinary science. He has years of experience as a home cook, working at a local bakery, and teaching cooking classes at Williams-Sonoma. After starting a TikTok account in March 2020 while quarantined in his childhood home, Jeremy’s presence grew to over 1.5 million followers in the first 6 months. During that time, he was featured in People Magazine, Fox News, BBC Radio, BuzzFeed, Tasty, Spoon University, and USA Today, among other media outlets.