Rigatoni with Tuscan Kale, Mushrooms, and Sausage

Rigatoni with Tuscan Kale, Mushrooms, and Sausage
Staff Writer
Rigatoni with Tuscan Kale, Black Trumpet Mushrooms, and Sausage
Will Budiaman

Rigatoni with Tuscan Kale, Black Trumpet Mushrooms, and Sausage

OK, I’ll admit, I was inspired to make this because black trumpet mushrooms were on sale. But, you can definitely make this with whatever mushrooms you like or have on hand and it would be just as good. The same thing goes for the pasta — any shape you can poke with a fork will do nicely — I just happen to like rigatoni. The Kale gives this dish a warm rustic feel. 

I’m no nonna, but here are the things that I think really matter: Brown the sausage well, be nice to the mushrooms, don't overcook the pasta, and season as you go. Enjoy!

Click here to see The Best Kale Recipes You've Ever Tried. 

Ingredients

  • 4 extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 hot Italian pork sausage, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 6 black trumpet mushrooms
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 onion, diced finely
  • 3 carrots, diced finely
  • 3 celery, diced finely
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 Tuscan kale, chiffonade
  • One 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 rigatoni
  • 1 thyme, minced
  • 1/4 grated pecorino romano

Directions

Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat in a saucepot. Add the sausage and cook until browned, about 7-8 minutes. Remove with tongs to a bowl and set aside.

Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the pot and add the mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook for 3-4 minutes, then remove to a bowl and set aside. Add the remaining olive oil along with the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook until softened, stirring often, for 8-9 minutes.

Add the kale and cook until wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add the sausage back into the pot and the crushed tomatoes. Simmer for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to boil over high heat. Season with salt until it tastes like the sea and add the pasta. Cook until al dente, according to package directions. Drain and reserve 1 cup pasta water.

Add the mushrooms and thyme to the sauce, stir, and toss with the pasta. Add up to 1 cup of the reserved pasta water to thicken the sauce, if needed. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve with grated pecorino romano.

Rigatoni Shopping Tip

Italian food is about simplicity and letting the ingredients shine. So make sure you get ingredients that are great quality and flavor. Farmers markets and specialty stores will have great produce and products. Just be sure to have some great olive oil.

Rigatoni Cooking Tip

Unlike other highly regarded cuisines, Italian cooking is usually simple to make with many dishes having only 4 to 8 ingredients. Italian cooks rely chiefly on the quality of the ingredients rather than on elaborate preparation.