Orecchiette with sausage and broccoli

This is the recipe that upped my pasta game: cooking dry pasta in the sauce! Game changer. I’ve also got a bit of a thing for this funny shaped pasta that I can’t pronounce. It reminds me of little suction cups or little fairy-sized soup bowls that gather the sauce and dispense it in small doses. Feel free to try this recipe with pork of chicken sausage. It’s a winner.


1 1/2 cups dry orecchiette

3 pork or beef sausages removed from casings

1 onion sliced

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp chilli flakes

1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper

1 cup broccoli florets

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1/4 cup grated Parmesan

3 cups chicken stock

1/2 tsp sea salt (more depending on salt level of stock used)

2 tablespoons fresh herbs (basil & parsley)


Heat saucepan to high heat and begin to brown sausage in pan. Use the bank of a wooden spoon to break the pieces as they brown.

Add sliced onions to pan and allow to soften – about 10 mins. Add garlic, chilli flakes, pepper, tomato paste and stock. Bring to the boil then add orecchiette. Cover pan and let simmer on medium heat, sitting pasta every 2-3 minutes to ensure it does not stick. If sticking, add more water 1/2 cup at a time.

Add broccoli florets and Parmesan when pasta is almost close to end of cooking time (it is a bit of an art to determine when this is however you should try the orecchiette to see how close it is). Cover and allow broccoli to steam in the sauce.

Remove orecchiette from heat when it is al dente (in Italian literally to the tooth – meaning it is is still slightly firm) and when broccoli has not become totally mushy.

Add fresh herbs at the very end, just before serving.

3 responses to “Orecchiette with sausage and broccoli”

  1. The pasta queen would have a heart attack (see IG posts! ) but I have tried cooking dry pasta with all the ingredients and it works well, mostly. Anything that helps a working MOM with little kids is worth it. The chunks of sausage look very good!


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