Orechiette with Italian Sausage and Broccoli

Orechiette with Italian Sausage and Broccoli

Read the entire recipe before you get started. This is quite different from usual pasta recipes, but just as delish! Instead of the usual Parmesan cheese garnish, try topping this with fresh breadcrumbs.

Prep Time: 10 minutes   
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients (serves 4):

  • 1 head broccoli, trimmed and cut into bite-size rosettes
  • 1 pound orecchiette pasta
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 to 5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 pound Italian turkey sausage or Italian garlic sausage, cut into quarter-inch slices
  • salt
  • 1 cup coarse, seasoned breadcrumbs, (toasted) Pecorino Romano, or Parmesan cheese for garnish


1. In a large pot of rapidly boiling water, blanch the broccoli until tender and cooked through, about 5 to 6 minutes. Reserve 1 cup of the liquid then drain and rinse the broccoli with cold water until it has cooled off. This is done to stop the cooking process. Spread broccoli out on a towel to finish draining.
2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water according to package directions, just until al dente.
3. While the pasta is cooking, place water in a cold skillet with the garlic and sausage; turn heat to medium-low. Cook while stirring occasionally, until garlic is golden and sausage is cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Pour reserved broccoli water into the pan with the sausage.

4. Drain the pasta when cooked then return the noodles to the pot you cooked it in. Season with salt. Pour sausage sauce over the pasta and stir in cooked broccoli. Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve immediately.

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