Recipe for orecchiette with cabbage and sausage

Serves 4

Salt and black pepper, to taste
1 pound orecchiette
(ear-shaped pasta)
4 tablespoons olive oil
¾ pound fresh Italian pork, chicken, or turkey sausage, removed from the casing
3 cloves garlic, chopped
¼ teaspoon crushed red
pepper
½ large head green cabbage, cut into wedges, cored, and thinly sliced
¼ cup white wine
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan (for sprinkling)

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1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta, stirring often, for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender. Use a heatproof measuring cup to remove 1 cup of the cooking water; set it aside. Drain the pasta into a colander and without rinsing, return it to the pot.

2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up the clumps with the edge of a spoon, for 8 to 10 minutes or until browned. Transfer the sausage to a plate lined with a paper towel.

3. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil to the skillet. Add the garlic and red pepper and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the cabbage and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes or until it starts to turn golden. Add the wine, salt, and black pepper. Cook for 2 minutes, scraping up the browned bits in the pan. Stir in the sausage and cook 2 minutes more.

4. Add the cabbage mixture to the pot of pasta and toss well. Cook over low heat, adding 1/2 to 3/4 cup of the pasta cooking water to thin the mixture. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and red pepper, if you like. Serve in shallow bowls, sprinkled with Parmesan. Lisa Zwirn

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