Niamh Doherty

Pasta with Spicy Sausage and Cream

In Supper on April 28, 2010 at 21:15

Also known as, “Another Day, Another Chorizo Recipe”…

This is a beauty of a recipe from Rachel Allen’s first book, Rachel’s Favourite Food. It’s quick, easy, delicious, multplies well for those times when you’re faced with a hungry crowd and is just as easily halved when dining à deux. There is no onion to chop, no simmering for hours, and requires little more from you than some light chopping and the occasional stir. This recipe also has the bonus of freezing well, and, since it’s just as easy to make twice the amount if you’re making it at all, is just the thing to keep stashed in the deep freeze for when hunger renders you incapable of even thinking about what it is you’d like to eat.

Any kind of spicy sausage is good here  – pepperoni, chorizo, kabanossi…the sky’s (or, rather, the pig’s) the limit. This is best made in summertime when tomatoes are really fresh – again, a bonus of its freezing capabilities; make it in bulk when the tomatoes are sweetly, juicily at their best – but I’ve always made it with tinned and it still tastes great. The smokiness of the sausage and the heat of the dried chili add a subtle warmth to what would otherwise be a basic pasta sauce.

You can swap the cream for creme fraiche if you’re feeling virtuous, which will lend an extra sharpness to the sauce. You can, of course, skip the cream/creme fraiche entirely, but it does impart a lovely richness, so it would be a shame to omit it altogether. If you’re not planning to freeze this sauce, make sure to  pop it into the fridge as soon as it’s cooled as the cream could turn otherwise.

Pasta with Spicy Sausage and Cream (taken from Rachel’s Favourite Food, by Rachel Allen)


700g fresh, ripe tomatoes, peeled and roughly chopped, or 2 x 400g tins of tomatoes

25g butter

4 garlic cloves, peeled and grated

2 tsp chopped rosemary

salt, pepper and sugar

225g spicy sausage

pinch dried chili flakes

175ml cream

500g pasta (rigatone, penne etc.)

4 tsbp grated Parmesan


1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan.  Add the tomatoes, garlic and rosemary.  Season with salt, pepper and sugar (the sugar really helps the tomatoes, especially if they’re tinned, so don’t be tempted to skip this step!). Cook for about 5 minutes, until the tomatoes have just begun to soften.

2. Add the sausage and chili flakes to the pan. Allow to simmer with the lid off for 10-20 minutes, or until the sauce has reduced by half, stirring frequently. Take off the heat and check the seasoning.

3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta until al dente, drain, and toss with the sauce. Divide among your dishes and top with Parmesan.


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