This is one of my personal favorite pasta dishes. I absolutely love the way the Italian sausage tastes along with the veggies. The older I get the more I love them and try to incorporate in as many in my cooking as I can. But seriously, lets not leave out the huge wads of ooey gooey goodness, the fresh mozzarella. That would have to be my most favorite part. That and how well all of these ingredients stand out on their own and create balance at the same time. It truly is a work of art.
1 T. of extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. of bulk Italian sausage
1 bundle of asparagus (with the dry cut ends snapped off at their breaking point and then chopped)
1 roasted red bell pepper (chopped)
sea salt and fresh cracked pepper
1/4 cup of white wine (I used a sweet Pinot Grigio-use whatever white wine you would drink)
1 cup of chicken stock
1/2 tsp. of crushed red pepper flakes
3 T. of fresh basil (thinly chopped)
1 lb. of fettuccine or linguine uncooked pasta
-Start a large stockpot with water for a boil. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, heat up the e.v.o. to brown the Italian sausage. Meanwhile, once your stockpot reaches a rapid bowl, stir in a healthy dash of sea salt and then blanch your asparagus cuts in it for 3 minutes. Strain out the asparagus and place them into an ice water filled bowl (this stops the cooking process) and return your stockpot water to a rapid boil; toss in the pasta for 7 minutes for Au-dente' (it will finish cooking in the sauce). Back to your saucepan now, once the sausage is nicely browned, add in the strained cooled asparagus and the red peppers and saute for 1-2 minutes to heat them all up. First pour in the wine to deglaze the pan while stirring it with your wooden spoon, then pour in the chicken stock and the red pepper flakes. Bring this up to a boil. Once the pasta is done, strain it and fold it into the sauce. Lastly, fold in the basil and then the chopped mozzarella cheese. Serves 4-6. Enjoy!