We’ve all been there…a great BBQ was had by all, but there was too much food bought/brought and nobody ate as much as they thought they could handle, and as a result you have been left with a load of cooked sausages. What to do with them? There’s only so many sausage sandwiches one can eat after all! Well, I can help you out of your conundrun!
The recipe below is a variation of a “Pasta al Forno” dish that was published in Olive Magazine in 2013. I have included a note after this recipe on how to make the original which is also yummy and appears regularly in my repertoire for fast, tasty weekday food!
Ingredients (serves 2-4, depending on appetite!):
Cooked sausages (enough for two per adult) cut lengthways and quartered
1tsbp of fennel seeds
1 clove of garlic
2-4 dried chilli pods (depending on your need for heat!)
2 tblsp of tomato puree
1 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
1 large / 2 small red bell peppers
1 tblsp of fresh chopped rosemary (if you only have dried use 1/2 tblsp)
50g pasta per person
Some cheese for grating over: Pecorino / Parmesan / Gran Padano etc
Freshly cracked black pepper and sea salt to season
Place a pan of salted water on the heat for the pasta.
Dry roast the fennel seeds slightly for a few minutes, careful not to burn them.
Pop the fennel seeds, chilli pods and garlic in a pestle and mortar and bash together.
Heat a small lug of olive oil in a frying pan to a medium heat and pop in the fennel/chili/garlic mix. Cook off for a couple of minutes.
Add the tomato puree and mix in with the aromatics; cook out for a minute or two.
Add in the tinned tomatoes and cook for a couple of minutes.
Meanwhile prepare you red peppers by deseeding, taking out the pith and cutting into roughyl 2cm pieces. Add to the pan and stir.
Add in your chopped sausages, turn the heat down and cook through until bubbling.
If the sauce becomes a little dry, add some water a little at a time. I use the tomato tin to get any left over tomato juice as well.
Place the pasta in to the boiling water. In the picture below I have used wholewheat pasta, but any pasta you have will do as long as it’s not the miniature stuff!
Chop the rosemary and add to the sausage mix along with a decent grind of fresh black pepper and some sea salt to season. Stir and cook through.
Drain the pasta. Check the sausage mix for seasoning and adjust if necessary.
Pour the sausage mix into the pasta; mix together and serve immediately on warmed plates.
Grate over a generous amount of the cheese and serve with a simple leaf salad with lemon dressing to freshen the palate.
The original recipe in Olive Magazine is for Rigatoni al Forno. Using pretty much the same ingredients but with fresh, high meat content sausages (I like to use Gubeen Italian Sausages to enhance the fennel seed and garlic flavours) and rigatoni pasta the following method would apply:
Deskin the sausages and place into a medium hot pan, cooking and breaking down the sausages as you go with the wooden spoon.
Then add the aromatic mix above with the rosemary; tinned tomatoes and puree, cook through. Add salt and pepper at the end.
Cook the rigatoni. Mix the pasta and meat mix together and place in a lasagne disj (or similar).
Grate 100g of Gran Padano over the top and then grill until the cheese melts and browns.
Al Forno literally means “from the fire” and this is where this dish is served straight from the grill / oven etc straight to the table still all hot and bubbling. People then help themselves!