This past week has been an exciting one for our family. Our oldest daughter, Gabriella, came home from a month long camp experience. Although she had written us letters and the camp had uploaded pictures, it felt as if she had been gone for months and we were thrilled to have her back
In true Hazan tradition, the first thing she wanted upon coming home was a good meal. “They even ruined salad,” she had bemoaned in one of her letters. I hate to think what she subsisted on.
So, what did Marcella Hazan’s granddaughter want for her first meal? Pasta of course! Not just any pasta, it had to be homemade egg pasta that she would help make.
In her honor, Giuliano created fabulous pappardelle with peppers and sausage. The sauce was savory and sweet without being cloying.
As he always does, Giuliano peeled the peppers that he put into the sauce. The skin of the pepper is harsh but when it is peeled, the pepper’s sweet flavor comes through. I’ve also never understood why Italian sausage in America always has fennel in it. For this recipe, and most Hazan recipes, fennel won’t work, so ask your grocer for plain sausage.
This sauce is quick to make and is great comfort food. Gabriella perked right up and decided her father should teach cooking lessons at the camp because she wants to go again next year!
Pappardelle with Sausage and Peppers
© By Giuliano Hazan
2 yellow bell peppers
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
½ small sweet yellow onion
½ pound plain, sweet sausage
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup canned whole peeled tomatoes with their juice
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1. Peel the peppers, remove the core and seeds, and cut into 1-inch squares.
2. Peel and finely chop the onion. Put it with the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet and place over medium high heat. Sauté until the onion turns to a rich golden color, about 5 minutes. Add the sausage, breaking it up into small chunks with a wooden spoon. Once the sausage is lightly browned, 2-3 minutes, add the peppers, season lightly with salt, and continue cooking until they are lightly colored, 6 to 8 minutes.
3. Coarsely chop the tomatoes and add them to the pan. Season with salt and continue cooking until the tomatoes are no longer watery, 15 to 20 minutes.
4. Cook the pasta and toss with sauce along with the butter and Parmigiano-Reggiano.