Orecchiette with Italian Sausage, Broccoli Rabe and Crunchy Garlic Breadcrumbs | Love and Olive Oil

This looks good for dinner tonight:

orecchiette with italian sausage, broccoli rabe and crunchy garlic breadcrumbs

Orecchiette with Italian Sausage, Broccoli Rabe and Crunchy Garlic Breadcrumbs | Love and Olive Oil.

orecchiette with italian sausage, broccoli rabe and crunchy garlic breadcrumbs

Makes 4-6 servings.

INGREDIENTS:

3-4 slices stale country bread, roughly chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
3 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound broccoli rabe, trimmed and cut into pieces
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, or more as needed
1 tablespoon chopped garlic, or more to taste
1/2 lb sweet Italian sausage, removed from casings
Pinch red pepper flakes
1 pound orecchiette pasta
Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

In a food processor, combine bread with salt, pepper, and dried herbs. Pulse briefly until bread breaks down into roughly 1/4-inch chunks.

Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet. Add breadcrumbs and toss until well coated. Saute until golden brown and crispy, being careful not to let the smaller pieces burn. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add broccoli rabe, and boil for 5-10 minutes or until tender (this will depend on the variety and size of your pieces).

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. When hot, add the garlic and cook until it begins to sizzle, about a minute; add the sausage and red pepper flakes and continue cooking until nicely browned, 5 to 7 minutes.

Scoop the broccoli out of the water with a slotted spoon or small strainer and transfer it to the skillet. Cook over medium-high heat, adding some of the pasta water as needed to help soften the broccoli.

In the already-boiling water, cook the pasta according to package directions. When the pasta is just barely al dente, drain, reserving about a cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the skillet with the broccoli and sausage and a couple of tablespoons of the reserved cooking water as needed; toss with until well combined. Season with salt and pepper. Top with breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese, as desired.

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