It's my favorite dish, so I tried to make it at home. My version is not as good as the original, but it's really good and kind of healthy.
Serves 2 as a main or 4 as a first
1 pound orecchiete
2 large bunches of green chard chopped(stems optional.You'll need to cook them longer.)
1 pound of chicken/turkey sausage casings removed
1 brown onion cut into fine dice
2 cloves garlic
crushed red pepper
2 TBSP Olive oil
In a dutch oven, heat the oil and add the sausage. Break it up with a spoon. Add and cook the onion until it's soft, 7 min. Add chopped garlic. Add chard. Once wilted, lower the heat to low. Cook it on low heat for 30 minutes, stirring and seasoning with Salt and Pepper.
Cook the pasta as directed and MAKE SURE YOU RESERVE AT LEAST ONE CUP OF THE PASTA WATER.
Drain and add the pasta to the dutch oven. Add a little of the cooking water, and keep stirring, incorporating the pasta into the the ragu.(Yes, it can still be a ragu without tomatoes)
Once the pasta is mixed in well, serve on a plate with some small grated parmiaggiano. If you want add some finely minced fresh breadcrumbs.
Boom! I mean, buon appetito.
Here's a good recipe -- it's for Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe (and that's a classic, delicious dish,) but it states that you can substitute chard for the broccoli rabe.
Pasta with Broccoli Rabe and Sausage
1 pound orecchiette (or some other short/small pasta)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound sweet (or hot, to taste) Italian sausage, casings removed
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 head broccoli rabe, ends trimmed
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups finely grated Parmesan
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the sausage and cook, crumbling it with a spoon, until browned, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add the broth and red pepper and bring to a boil. Then add the broccoli rabe, cover, and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the butter and Parmesan and cook, uncovered, until the sauce thickens slightly, about 2 minutes. Add the drained pasta, season with the salt and black pepper, and toss to combine.
Tip: Broccoli rabe, a leafy distant cousin of broccoli, has a bitter flavor and smaller florets. For a milder alternative, substitute broccoli. For a more peppery bite, try arugula, Swiss chard, or beet greens.
Yield: Makes 4 servings
re: Nancy Berry
I made your recipe tonight, substituting red chard for the broccoli rabe, using a sweet Italian sausage, 1C of Parmesan and only 2 Tbps of butter.
It was delicious! thanks for taking the time to post it. It wasn't exactly as my (poor) memory recalls the dish at Mozza, but we'll certainly make it again.
alcesito: Did your Mozza dish have any tomato sauce in it? The one I know from Lidia B. on an old Julia TV show did not. I don't use any either. It's flavored by the greens, b.rabe and sausage. I've made it with all kinds of greens, most recently with kale (the houseguest that shows up in every single CSA box from now til at least April)!
I guess the use of tomato sauce in this dish would depend if the influence came from Nancy Silverton, Joe Bastianich or Mario Batali. It's totally delicious without tomato sauce.
Btw, I'm so jealous of anybody who's eaten at Mozza. I was down there a couple of times this year, but was at the mercy of friends who had other ideas. Maybe next year.
Well, it's almost exactly like the one posted above in this thread. I serve it with lots of grated parm or pec. I like it best with broccoli rabe, but it's good with chard and kale, too. It's important to cook the sausages separately and not plunk them in with the other ingredients while simmering. They dry out too much.
The red pepper flakes are very important IMO.