Salsiccia means sausage in Italian. It is pronounced sahl-SEET-chah. Cute name huh? It makes sense because this spaghetti has sausage in it. It also has mushrooms, but the Italian word for mushroom is fungo… not very appetizing… to say the least. I’m always looking for new and interesting ways to cook pasta during the week. I’m sure you can guess that pasta is a staple in my household, as it was growing up. I go through withdrawals if I do not eat it at least once a week………………… No, seriously. I do.
We grew up eating the traditional Pasta and Meatballs in the Zolli household. While that is still one of my favorite dinners of all time, I do enjoy different sauces. If you search for pasta recipes on this blog, you will end up with 17 results. There really are hardly any pasta recipes that don’t catch my eye.
This is not your traditional Italian red pasta sauce, that’s for sure. I did not use canned tomatoes, only tomato paste, to really get that concentrated tomato flavor into this dish. I also added Worcestershire sauce to add a beefy taste to this sauce, even though there is no beef in it at all! You can omit the sausage if you wanted a strictly vegetarian dish. I’m sure it would still taste delicious that way. I loved the particular sausage that I used and think it adds a lot of necessary flavor. You will be pleasantly surprised. I sure was!
Spaghetti alla Salsiccia (adapted from Food Network magazine, November 2011)
- 1 lb spaghetti
- 2 tsp olive oil, divided
- 1 (16oz) pkg sliced mushrooms
- 1 lb Sweet Italian Sausage with Provolone
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup white wine
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 6 oz tomato paste
- 3 cups water (reserved from cooking pasta)
- Shredded Provolone or Parmesan cheese, for topping (optional)
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook until al dente, according to the directions on the box. Reserve all of the cooking water for later, but drain the pasta and set aside.
While the pasta is cooking, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the mushrooms until lightly browned, about 5-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir once more to distribute seasoning and set aside in a small bowl. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil to the same skillet to cook the sausage. Cook until brown and crispy, about 5-10 minutes, breaking the sausage up with a wooden spoon.
- Once the sausage is just-about cooked through, pour in the white wine. Take this opportunity to scrape all the yummy bits off the bottom of the pan. Once the wine reduces by half, add the mushrooms back in, along with the Worcestershire sauce and tomato paste. Cook, stirring for 1-2 minutes, so everything gets coated.
Add in 3 cups of the reserved cooking water and stir to combine. Bring the sauce to a boil and then simmer, uncovered, until slightly thickened, 20-30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. As with any pasta sauce, the longer you simmer it, the better it will taste. I simmered mine for about an hour but it is not necessary.
- Combine the spaghetti and the sauce, adding some of the reserved cooking water to loosen the sauce, if needed. Top with shredded cheese, if desired. Serves 4-6.
I am submitting this dish to Presto Pasta Nights. It is a weekly blogging event that was started by Ruth of Once Upon a Feast over 3 years ago. She also happens to be hosting this week. I am lucky enough to be the host next week so watch out for that! Tutti Mangia!
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