One of my all time favorite pastas. You will need some good quality Italian sausages with fennel for a great flavor. I learnt this dish from my amazing Italian friend years ago, after tasting some at her house. It was so good, I simply had to have the recipe! Have been making it ever since.
It takes about half an hour to make and is so delicious you will have your family asking for this over and over. All you need is a salad and garlic bread for a nice meal for friends! I barely bother with that when I am cooking this for myself, as I find it most satisfying and comforting to tuck into a bowl of this just by itself on a cold winters night.
SPICY SAUSAGE RAGU
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed
400g Italian sausages, skinned
1/2 to 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon dried oregano
black pepper and salt
4oog tin of plum tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato puree
150 ml double cream ( I use single cream sometimes)
500 g rigatoni
grated parmesan cheese to serve
Heat your oil in a large heavy frying pan. Add chopped onions, cook till soft for a few minutes, do not brown. Now add the garlic and after a couple of minutes add in the crumbled sausages. Add salt and pepper. Really stir and break the sausages up with a wooden spoon and cook till they start to get brown. Now add the fennel seeds, oregano and chilli flakes. After a couple of minutes add the tinned tomatoes, and the tomato puree and bring to a simmer. Cook for 15-20 minutes or till the sauce has thickened to a nice consistency. Add your cream and stir.
Meanwhile, cook your pasta in a large pot of salted water, until al dente (do not over cook your pasta). Save some water in a cup once pasta is cooked, you can use this to make the sauce thinner if you need to. Add drained pasta to the sauce, toss till all the pasta is coated well in the sauce. Serve straight away with parmesan cheese.