Dispensing Happiness

A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.-Elsa Schiapirelli

That's me, the magical good cook.

Borrowing from my friend Dexygus, I've created my own food blog.

Read of my exploits in the kitchen! Salivate over the descriptions of fabulous desserts and savory meals I've concocted!

No, seriously...go ahead. It'll make my day.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Pasta, Sausage and Bean Ragout


With the arrival of the latest Bon Appetit (which has replaced Gourmet as my favorite foodie mag), we're trying lots of new dishes.

One I made last week was Pasta, Sausage and Bean Ragout.

Oh, yum. I mean, yum.

What a fabulous dish. And so easy to make.

It had an amazing flavor, and was surprisingly filling.

Pasta, Sausage and Bean Ragout

6 Main-course servings

2 Tbl. olive oil
1 large onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 lb. ground beef (15% fat)
3 spicy Italian sausages, casing removed
2 14 1/2 oz. cans low-salt chicken broth
1 15 oz. can cannellini, drained
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh basil, divided
2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper
1/2 cup small elbow macaroni
1 6 oz. bag baby spinach leaves
1/3 cup grated Romano cheese
Additional grated Romano cheese

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and saute 6 minutes. Add beef and sausage and saute until brown, breaking up meats with back of fork, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with juice, broth, beans, 1 cup basil, oregano, and dried crushed red pepper. Simmer 15 minutes to blend flavors, stirring occasionally. Add pasta and cook until tender but still firm to bite, about 15 more minutes. Add spinach and cook just until wilted, stirring occasionally, about 4 miutes. Mix in 1/3 cup cheese and remaining 1/2 cup basil. Season ragout with salt and pepper, ladle into bowls. Serve, passing additional cheese seperately.

(Recipe from the October 2004 issue of Bon Appetit)

I split the recipe in half, making a batch for Matt and one for me. His ragout did contain sausage and ground beef, but mine was made up of Boca Italian sausages and Morningstar Farms Crumbles.

Thanks to our hedge-like basil plant, we had no trouble getting our cup and a half of fresh leaves.

We also used a bit more cannellini than called for (a slightly larger can), and because it just didn't seem like enough, I added more pasta. Instead of elbow macaroni, we used gemelli (I'm not fond of elbows). And rather than use a store-bought broth, I made my own vegetable stock, and used that.

A really good, tasty dish. And perfect for the encoaching fall-like weather.

3 Thoughts for food:

At 8:34 AM, Blogger steph v. horn said...

That looks like a perfect winter dish. I'll have to remember this one. I made homemade pretzles the other night and they tasted like the ones you buy at the mall. I was a happy camper.

At 12:09 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

It is an incredible dish...I still can't get over the flavor.
And I have an Auntie Anne's pretzel clone recipe: Matt thinks mine are better than the chain's!

At 3:20 PM, Blogger dexygus said...

aw man, it's 12:18pm, and i haven't eaten a thing yet. that picture is making my stomach growl something awful. it looks so good, but as you know, i can't make it until i'm done with my saveur thing. waaah. hmm, mr. dexygus could make it. damn, i'd better eat something.


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