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Milk Street Recipe

Orecchiette with Sardinian Sausage Ragu

35 minutes

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Orecchiette with Sardinian Sausage Ragu

Saffron gives this simple Sardinian ragu lots of character. The spice’s unique, vaguely floral, slightly minerally flavor pairs beautifully with the sausage, tomatoes and salty pecorino, but since saffron is a somewhat rarified ingredient, we’ve kept it optional. Even without, the dish is delicious. Our favorite pasta for this recipe is orecchiette, a coin-sized, saucer-shaped noodle that does an excellent job of catching the bits of sausage. Small shells and campanelle work well, too. If you can find pecorino Sardo, a sheep's milk cheese from Sardinia, use it in place of pecorino Romano; it has a milder, slightly smoky flavor and adds complexity to the dish.

4-6

Servings

Tip

Don't use canned tomato sauce instead of tomato puree. The former contains seasonings such as salt and garlic powder; the latter is made from only tomatoes. Also, don't worry if the sauce is ready ahead of the orecchiette; it won't suffer if it waits a few minutes off heat while the pasta finishes.

35 minutes

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