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Quick and Easy Dinner: Farfalle with Ricotta, Zucchini, and Italian Sausage

May 30, 2008

I didn’t think I was going to have anything to share until my return from Barcelona. I had no big dinner plans, no fancy ingredients, nothing, in fact, but whatever was already in the refrigerator, waiting to be used up before I left. And yet, I managed to pull together, in less than twenty minutes, an easy, inexpensive dinner that I decided I just had to share. Sure those multiple hour kitchen projects are fun, but sometimes quick and easy is just as delicious.

Tossing hot pasta with ricotta is a great way to make a creamy pasta dish with about half the effort and also half the heart attack-inducing properties of a heavy cream bechamel. I was really unsure how this would turn out, but I loved it and I’m sure I’ll try this again. I do use whole milk ricotta, because I generally try to avoid foods that have been somehow engineered to lower the fat content (I blame Michael Pollan for this aversion). I suspect low-fat ricotta would work just fine, though, if you are not as afraid of it as I am. Probably turkey or chicken sausage would be great, too, rather than the pork sausage I used. You could probably try any variation on this and it would still be easy, fast, and delicious. I encourage experimentation.

Farfalle with Ricotta, Zucchini, and Italian Sausage

  • 3 links of hot Italian sausage
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 1-2 large cloves of garlic
  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme
  • half a box of Farfalle pasta
  • 2-3 heaping tablespoons of ricotta
  • salt and pepper

Set a large pot of salted water on to boil, and cook the pasta until it’s al dente, or however you like your pasta cooked. While it’s cooking, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Remove the sausage from their casings and add to the hot skillet. Use a spoon to break the sausage apart as it cooks. Once the sausage is cooked almost all the way through, add the zucchini, the minced garlic, and the leaves from the thyme sprigs. Stir everything together well and cover the pan, so the zucchini can steam a little bit and create some liquid in the skillet.

Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the skillet with the sausage and zucchini. Stir it together well, and then add the ricotta, and a bit of salt and pepper to taste. Stir thoroughly so the ricotta coats everything well, and serve with a bit of parmesan on top.

Could it get any easier? I don’t think so.

I’m in New York this weekend, and anticipating some really great dinners. I’m staying with my cousin in Brooklyn right now, and she lives on a street that is lousy with restaurants, bars, butchers, fish markets, cheese shops, and cafes. It is pretty fantastic and I am really jealous and looking even less happily on Boston at this point. Sigh. I love New York.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 10, 2008 1:28 pm

    Now THIS is something I could make.
    My brother lives in Brooklyn. Scoundrals, all of them.

  2. Mr. X permalink
    June 17, 2008 3:39 pm

    Apparently the strike was in Spain:

  3. February 21, 2011 9:15 pm

    We are cooking up Giada’s Farfalle, Mushroom, Peas and Turkey Sausage recipe right now and stumbled upon this! Looks great. Anything with ricotta is a winner in this house!

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