Growing Chefs! Ontario Orecchiette with Rapini, Fennel Sausage, and Burrata

Orecchiette with Rapini, Fennel Sausage, and Burrata

The bitter pairing of rapini with sweet sausage is a classic combination. Top this pasta off with creamy burrata and you have a delicious authentic Italian meal. Orecchiette are a type of pasta and their name means little ears. They are a great shape for soaking up sauce!
Serves 4 to 6
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling3 sweet Italian fennel sausage, removed from casing3 garlic cloves, minced2 anchovy filets, choped1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes1/2 cup dry white wine1 pound broccoli rabe (rapini), ends trimmed, leaves picked and separated from stalks with florets12 ozs orechchiette1 ball burrata cheese
Measuring spoonsMeasuring cupsMixing bowls of various sizesCutting boardChef's knifeStrainerLarge potLarge frying panWooden spoonTasting spoonsRaspDish towel

Get Organized!

Gather your mise en place; get together all of the equipment needed for the recipe and gather your ingredients.

Get Prepped!

Remove the sausage from the casing and discard the casing.

Remove the papery skin from the garlic and mince it finely with a rasp. Alternatively chop it very finely with a chef’s knife.

Chop the anchovies finely.

Trim off the woody ends of the rapini. Pull off the leaves and cut them into 1 inch pieces. Cut the florets and the stem into 1 inch pieces.

Measure out the olive oil, red pepper flakes, white wine and pasta.

Get Cooking!

Heat a frying pan over medium high heat and saute the sausage with olive until it is cooked through, breaking it up into small pieces as you go along. When the sausage is cooked, add the red pepper flakes and garlic and cook until fragrant.

Deglaze immediately with white wine and let reduce by half. Turn off the heat and let the pan sit while the rest of the ingredients are prepared.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and add the rapini thicker stems. Add the florets and leaves after 1 minute, and cook for an additional 1 – 2 minutes until tender. Strain and squeeze out the additional water. Add the rapini to the sausage pan.

Empty the blanching water and bring another pot of water to a boil to cook the pasta. Cook in well salted water until al dente. Strain the pasta, and reserve 1 cup of pasta water. Add the pasta water into the sausage rapini mixture and bring to a low simmer over medium heat. Taste and adjust with salt as needed.

Add the orecchiette to the pan and toss to coat. Tip the pasta into a large serving dish and top with the burrata. Season with salt, pepper, and additional olive oil drizzled on top.