Have you ever tried cooking your pasta in wine? Sounds crazy, I know, I thought the same when first hearing of the concept. But what a great way to make things more exciting, right? Test it out with this purple pasta with sausage, cranberries, and chard. The pasta takes on the color of the red wine and all together with its greens, purples, and reds it screams Christmas. If you are feeling adventurous and want to make this tasty treat (I went back for a second helping the first time I made it!),
K's Purple Pasta with Sausage, Cranberries, & Chard
1 lb pasta (recommended: spaghetti or angel hair)
2 extra large bottles of table wine (get the cheap twist off kind, like Carl Rossi)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lb hot Italian sausage, casings removed and broken into chunks
1/2 lb sweet Italian sausage, casings removed and broken into chunks
3 cloves garlic, chopped finely
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup cranberry juice
1 large bunch chard, stems removed and chopped
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
salt and black pepper, to taste
- Fill a large pasta pot with the red wine. Bring to a boil, add spaghetti and cook according to package's instructions.
- While wine boils and pasta cooks make the sauce. Heat the extra-virgin olive oil in a large deep skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage, breaking and crumbling it into pieces with a wooden spoon. Brown for 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and onions to sausage and cook for 6 minutes until tender.
- Add dried cranberries and cranberry juice. Stirring to combine. Let reduce a minute.
- Add chard in batches and stir to wilt down. Once all has wilted in, season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste.
- Using tongs or a pasta spoon, scoop the cooked pasta from the boiling wine and add to the pan with sausage and chard. Do not drain the wine because you may want to add some to the mixture to thin the sauce. To do so add up to 2 ladles of the red wine to the pasta.
- Top pasta with the cheese and toss thoroughly with the sausage/chard mixture.
- Serve immediately with extra cheese for topping.