Rigatoni & Sausage Ragù
This rigatoni and sausage ragù might just be one of the best, most flavourful meals ever!
Rigatoni coated in a rich tomato sauce flavoured with sausage, red wine, and cream accented with finely diced mushrooms for an incredibly delicious meal. This is most definitely going into my regular meal rotation!
I like to use rigatoni so the sauce gets right inside those tender tubes of pasta, but really any pasta on hand will work. The sauce is nice and clingy and thick, so each mouthful is packed with flavour.
This is one of those dishes that can be made entirely vegan with just a few substitutions. Swap the sausage with your best vegan variety and the heavy cream with cashew paste (cashews soaked overnight in water, drained, rinsed, and puréed with clean water into a paste) to help thicken the sauce. The Parmigiano Reggiano can also be easily swapped with a quality vegan parmesan.
As with any recipe, the highest quality ingredients will always get you the best results, so if you have a special can of San Marzano tomatoes you've been saving, this is the recipe to use it in. For the wine, go with a nice Merlot, Beaujolais, or red Zinfandel.
(Makes 4 servings)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1lb sweet Italian sausage, casings removed and crumbled
1 large sweet onion, minced
1 cup cremini mushrooms, finely diced
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon fresh nutmeg, grated
1 cup red wine (fruity variety)
1 can (796ml) whole San Marzano tomatoes packed in tomato purée
3 cups (4 servings) uncooked rigatoni, prepared
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, grated (optional: plus more for serving)
In a large, deep saute pan over medium-high heat, add the extra-virgin olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the crumbled sausage. Brown while breaking the sausage down to a finely ground consistency, removing all large clumps. Add the minced onion and finely diced mushroom, as well as the sea salt. Cook, stirring often, until the onion is soft and the mushrooms have released their water and have browned (about 10 to 12 minutes).Add the minced garlic, bay leaf, ground black pepper, and nutmeg, then saute an additional minute before adding the red wine. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the majority of the liquid has evaporated (8 to 10 minutes).
While the pan simmers, place the tomatoes and sauce they are packed in, into a blender or food processor and roughly purée before adding it to the pan. Once well combined and again at a simmer, reduce the heat to medium-low, partially cover, and let simmer for 1 hour stirring occasionally.
During the last 20 minutes, prepare the pasta. In a large pot, prepare the pasta according to package instructions, reserving 1 cup pasta water after cooking. Drain and set aside until the sauce is ready.
Remove the bay leaf, stir in the cream, and adjust seasoning if needed. Add the pasta to the pan and stir to coat. If the sauce is too think, use a little of the reserved pasta water to loosen it up. Stir in the Parmigiano Reggiano and serve with (optional) additional grated cheese.
Nutritional Information Per Serving:
total calories = 394 | total fat = 15.79g | saturated fat = 6.94g | cholesterol = 42.75mg | sodium = 681.75mg | carbohydrates = 37.98g | dietary fibre = 3.49g | sugars = 8.28g | protein = 19.29g