Wednesday, March 14, 2012

White Bean and Turkey Sausage Pasta Bowl: A weeknight wonder!

I love pasta. I readily admit that my lust for pasta and all carbs basically drives my life in the kitchen. And I am shameless about it. I'll do anything to justify eating pasta. Case in point, my white bean and turkey sausage weeknight pasta. While rummaging around my frig I came upon the last remains of a bag of spinach that was nearing death. So I decided to dip into the pantry and riff on the whole sausage and peppers idea with a twist. This dish is a great way to use up some of those pantry items and frig staples like chicken broth, yogurt and lemon that make a tangy and tasty sauce for this dish. Coupled with turkey sausge I found in the freezer and a jar of roasted peppers, white beans and sundried tomatoes, I soon had myself a feast! Husband loved it. We will definitely be making this one again!

White bean and turkey sausage pasta
A Girl and Her Kitchen

1 can white beans (cannellini beans), low sodium, drained and rinsed
3 links of turkey sausage, removed from casing (spicy or mild) (make your own sausage! Click here for recipe)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1 lemon
1 1/2 cups chicken broth (low sodium)
3 tbsp greek yogurt
3 roasted red peppers, diced (jarred peppers work well)
8 sundried tomatoes, diced (like to use those packed in oil)
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp Red pepper flakes (more for spicier flavor)
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
3 cups baby spinach
2 cups short pasta, cooked to al dente (e.g. campanelle or bowties)
1/2 cup grated pecorino cheese

In a large sauté pan, cook the onion and garlic with a pinch of salt and pepper on medium heat in 2 tbsp of olive oil about 5 minutes until the onion is soft and slightly caramelized.
 Add the sausage, using a wooden spoon to break up the meat into smaller chunks. Continue cooking until the sausage is browned and mostly cooked through, about 5-7 minutes. Add in the peppers, tomatoes, tomato paste, and red pepper flakes. Stir to combine and continue cooking another 4 minutes.
Add the white beans, chicken broth and juice of one lemon and stir to combine, picking up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
Let simmer for 5 minutes and then add the baby spinach. Allow the spinach to wilt in the warmth of the sauce.
Stir in yogurt and continue to lightly simmer sauce until desired thickness (3-5 minutes).
 Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Add pasta and cheese and stir to combine so that pasta is evenly coated with the sauce. Serve warm with a sprinkle of extra cheese.

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