Italian Sausage and Mushroom Tortiglioni

The beauty of Italian cooking is the simplicity of its ingredients, provided they are high quality. This quick and easy recipe features staples in Italian cuisine, such as Parmigiano Reggiano, pasta, pork sausages, garlic and parsley. It’s important to use Italian sausages. They have a coarser texture than British ones. They’re the key to a delicious outcome so no bangers, capish?

You can buy Italian sausages in supermarkets, just look for a specific description on the packaging. However, your best bet is the Italian delicatessen. I found black truffle sausages at Signorelli’s Deli in Cambridge, which complemented the earthy mushroom flavours in this dish. I even enhanced the recipe with a few drops of truffle oil. However, if truffles aren’t your thing, there are sausages with chilli, garlic or fennel… even plain ones. Anything goes really, as long as they are Italiano!

This dish is best with a short, sturdy pasta such as rigatoni, tortiglioni or penne. Use your favourite variety of mushrooms or a mix of them, such as button, chestnut and cremini. For a more intense flavour, add a small amount of porcini mushrooms to the mix.

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Top 5 Reader Favourite Recipes 2014

I only started this food blog in February and looking back at the past 10 months, I am pleased that my recipes have garnered so much interest. Based on page views, the following 5 recipes have been most popular with my readers in 2014.

I thought all of my pasta recipes would be the most viewed, but I was happy to see a real mix of dishes in this list. Here goes…

No. 5: Deep Dish Red Pepper Explosion Pizza – Who says tomatoes are vital to a good pizza? Red pepper paste, particularly the one from Olive Branch, is the new tomato sauce. There are no tomatoes on this pizza, just lots of delicious red peppers (red pepper paste, roasted red peppers from a jar and fresh red peppers). A real explosion of red peppers! Throw in some mushrooms, olives, onions and mozzarella and you have a winning pizza.

Pizza

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Penne with Ham and Peas in Tomato Cream Sauce

Looking for a delicious pasta dish that won’t cost a pretty penne? This recipe for Penne with Ham and Peas in Tomato Cream Sauce is so quick and easy to make. All you need is some ham, tomato sauce, frozen peas, cream and some pasta! You can use any other pasta shape, although I don’t recommend long noodles such as spaghetti or linguini. Pasta shells work well too.

Penne

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