In the first installment of Del Posto’s Passport to Italian Cuisine cooking class series, Chef di Cucina Matt Abdoo expounded on the virtues of the fundamental building block of Italian cooking: fresh pasta. This recipe was one of several that students learned to execute from start to finish. Join Matt next Saturday for the second class in the series: the Art of Stuffed Pasta. For tickets and more information, click here.
6 to 8 portions
For the spiced sausage:
1 pound ground lamb
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon red wine
For the spice mixture for sausage:
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons garlic purée
2 tablespoons roasted red pepper purée
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 pint carrot juice
2 cups diced carrots
2 cups chopped carrots
1 teaspoon sugar
Orange zest, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1 pound orecchiette pasta (at Del Posto, we like to use orecchiette because its “little ear” shape holds sauce well. You can buy fresh or frozen orecchiette at your local Italian specialty shop, or gourmet market.)
1/4 cup pecorino cheese
Extra virgin olive oil
Breadcrumbs, for garnish
To make the spice mixture for the sausage:
- In a bowl, combine spices, lamb, salt, and water. Incorporate thoroughly using your hands. Set aside.
To make the carrot puree:
- Cook carrots in carrot juice until tender. Strain, and reserve the diced carrots. Puree the remaining chopped carrots. Season with orange zest, salt and pepper to taste. Fold the diced carrots into the seasoned carrot puree. Set aside.
- To assemble the spiced sausage:
- Mound the sausage in the center of a cold pan. Cook until the bottom of sausage is crispy, and a good fond has developed. Break apart and cook through. Deglaze the pan with ¼ cup of chicken stock then add the butter.
- While the sausage is cooking, cook 1 pound of pasta according to package instructions. Strain the pasta and return to pot when done, reserving some cooking liquid.
- Add sausage, pecorino, olive oil, and a little cooking water to the pasta. Stir over medium heat until creamy.
- Distribute among plates, and garnish with dollops of carrot puree and breadcrumbs. Serve immediately.