Orecchiette with Andouille Sausage and Pesto Chipotle Sauce

Orecchiette with Andouille Sausage and Pesto
Using Italian ingredients makes for a delectable meal, and pasta orecchiette is no exception. Orecchiette according to Recipes Wikia, is a pasta typical of the Apulia (Italian: Puglia) region of Southern Italy.
Orecchiette Pasta - uncooked

The shape of the pasta is what gives it, its name. The pasta resembles a small ear.

In Italian, the word “orecchio” means “ear”, and the suffix ‘etto’ means ‘small’. The pronunciation of Orecchiette is : ohr-ay-KYEHT-ee.

In another article we noted that Andouille Sausage is thanks to French cuisine. The sausage is double smoked pork, that is once the meat is prepared it is smoked, then put into a sausage casing and smoked again.

Our featured recipe is actually a mix of two pasta recipes, which are Pesto Orecchiette with Chicken Sausage and Gluten Free Creamy Pesto Fettuccine (click links to view recipes).

Now for our featured recipe Orecchiette with Andouille Sausage and Pesto Chipotle Sauce, and here is what you will need.

16 ounces of cooked orecchiette

2 Andouille sausage links, about ½ pound, sliced

3/4 cup fresh basil pesto (link here for recipe – History of Pesto Sauce)

2 teaspoons chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

15 symphony cherry tomatoes (about), sliced in half to measure 1 cup

1 pound green beans, trimmed, cut in half

Prepare basil pesto, and add the 2 teaspoons of adobe sauce to one cup of the pesto (get ingredients by following link above). Or if you are using your favorite store bought brand (preferably in a jar) remove one cup and mix in the adobe sauce. Set prepared pesto aside.

If you have any left over basil pesto sauce, store in a glass jar and pour a thin layer of olive oil over top of pesto to keep it from browning, and place a lid on jar and tighten. The pesto should keep in cooler for 7 to 10 days. Pesto sauce makes a great spread for sandwiches as well.

fresh green beans and cherry tomatoesPrepare green beans and symphony of cherry tomatoes and set aside.

adding greens beans to pot of  boiling water with Orecchiette pastaCook pasta according to package instructions. Last three minutes of cooking time for pasta, add prepared green beans.

cooked Orecchiette and green beansDrain, but do not rinse. Set aside.

adding Andouille to pastaSlice sausage into 1/2 inch slices. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add a tablespoon of olive oil, add meat and move about until heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan.

In the same large skillet, add the pasta green bean mix, the cup of pesto, sausage, and mix until coated with pesto chipotle sauce.

Orecchiette with Andouille Sausage and Pesto

Plate and serve.

 

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Gluten Free Creamy Pesto Fettuccine

Gluten Free Creamy Pesto Fettuccine

I like going to the Kona Grill here in town. They make the best Apple Walnut Bread Pudding and a wonderful Macadamia Chicken Salad. My favorite though is their Basil Pesto Linguine. I did adventure into the kitchen and used my cooking skills to try and mimic the dish (I posted it here: Basil Pesto Linguine). It came out pretty good, though it still needed something. So back to Kona Grill I went.

This time I was fortunate, as the manger came by my table and asked how our food was. I told her that I had tried my hand at making this dish, but it still needed something. She told me the pesto sauce contained chipotle peppers in adobo sauce as well. Then she said that is all she could say. But for me that was enough.

Play the video to get a glimpse at the finished dish. Though we did forget to put the small cherry tomatoes, we did even miss them, As the recipe had the same flavor as the Kona Grill. This time though I used gluten free fettuccine pasta.

Here is what you will need for the featured recipe.

16 ounces of cooked gluten free Fettuccine

1 lb. of chicken breasts, about 2, skinless and boneless

2 Andouille sausage links, about ½ pound

Can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobe Sauce½ cup fresh basil pesto (link here for recipe – History of Pesto Sauce)

1 teaspoon chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

1/3 cup heavy cream

15 cherry tomatoes (about), sliced in half to measure 1 cup (optional)

Cook gluten free fettuccine according to package instructions.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Meantime, while chicken is a little frozen, slice chicken breasts horizontally 2 to 3 times, depending on thickness of the breast meat. Cut slices into 1-inch chunks. Place cut chicken onto a baking sheet and place in heated oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until chicken is oblique in color and no longer pink.

Next add pesto to a small bowl and mix in adobo sauce and heavy cream, and set aside.

Cooked chciken and andouille sausage with creamy pesto

Place a large frying pan over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Next slice links down the middle and remove meat from casings and place into pan and start moving meat around with a spatula, so meat falls apart into small chunks.

Now add cooked chicken, and mix in with sausage. Next add pesto – chipotle sauce and mix in.

Prepared Gluten Free Creamy Pesto Fettuccini in a large ceramic coated  pan

Next add cook gluten free pasta, and mix till well incorporated.

Gluten Free Creamy Pesto FettuccinePlace pasta onto a serving platter, then plate and serve.

 

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Basil Pesto Linguine

Basil Pesto Linguine - plated

This recipe uses an Andouille sausage, which has its origins in Brittany, France. It is a smoked meat using pork. It is a sausage that is used in the Louisiana Creole culture. It is a sausage much like the Mexican or Spanish chorizo, as some Andouille sausage makers also use the gastrointestinal system of the pig,

Andouille is made from smoked pork, garlic, pepper, onions, wine, and seasonings. Most Andouille is made from a Boston Butt roast. The sausage is doubled smoked, as once the casing is stuffed, it is smoked again. Andouille is not a high fat sausage, with lots of pepper flavor, though it has a slight heat to it.

We used an all organic Andouille, fresh stuffed casing, purchased at our local Whole Foods Market. Let’s get started with preparing our featured recipe: Basil Pesto Linguine and here is what you will need.

16 ounces of cooked linguine

1 lb. of chicken breasts, about 2, skinless and boneless

2 Andouille sausage links, about ½ pounds

½ cup fresh basil pesto (link here for recipe – History of Pesto Sauce)

15 cherry tomatoes (about), sliced in half to measure 1 cup

Cook linguine according to package instructions.

Meantime, slice chicken breasts horizontally 2 to 3 times, depending on thickness of the breast meat. Cut slices into 1-inch chunks, set aside.

cooking andouille sausage

Place a large frying pan over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of avocado oil. Next slice links down the middle and remove meat and place into pan and start moving meat around with a spatula, so meat falls apart into small chunks.

sausage, chicken meat with basil pesto

Now add chicken, and continue to cook, until both meats are cooked, and chicken is no longer pink, but oblique. Next add basil and mix in.

meats and cheery tomatoes

Now add tomatoes and cook until tomatoes skins start to wrinkle, about 5 to 7 minutes.

Basil Pesto Linguine - close up

Add cooked linguine and mix meat and pasta together.

Basil Pesto Linguine - plated

Place pasta onto a serving platter, then plate and serve.

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The History of Pesto Sauce

Pesto Sauce

Pesto is a sauce originating in Genoa in the Liguria region of northern Italy, and from the time the Italians invented pesto it has always been prepared with crushed garlic, basil, and European pine nuts blended with olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and including Fiore Sardo, a cheese made from sheep’s milk.

It is possible the mineral-rich seaside soil and temperate climate of Liguria is why pesto sauce has  become a beloved sauce in northeren Italy, as they have the perfect conditions for growing basil.

The Meaning of Pesto

Different Materials to make Mortars and Pestles

Click To Enlarge For Better Viewing

The Italian word for pesto: pestare, means to pound, or to crush. Pesto was originally prepared with a marble mortar and wooden pestle.

The ingredients were pounded or crushed with a circular motion of the pestle in the mortar.

The book “Pesto Genovese: an Ageless Benchmark of Great Italian Cuisine,” writes that the ancient Romans ate a paste called moretum, prepared by crushing cheese, garlic and herbs together.

Because the term pesto is a generic word for anything that is made by pounding or crushing, that leaves the original pesto sauce recipe open to flexible and differing ways to prepare the sauce.

Flexible Ways to Prepare Pesto Sauce

In accent Provence, France the pesto was prepared without using pine nuts, as no pine trees grow there to provide the nuts. Sometimes almonds are used instead of pine nuts, and mint leaves are mixed in with the basil leaves. Some have even used spinach or cilantro in place of basil.

grated Asiago cheese

Grated Asiago Cheese

The interchangeable use of the nuts and greens just depends on your taste. In our kitchen at Splendid Recipes and More, we have used pecans in place of pine nuts, and almost always use Asiago cheese in place of the traditional Parmesan cheese.

Here’s the recipe for the traditional pesto sauce, though as we said, at Splendid Recipes and More, we use Asiago cheese. Here is what you will need.

Pesto Sauce - over head shot2 cups packed fresh basil leaves, no stems

¼ cup pine nuts

2 large garlic cloves

½ cup grated Romano/Parmesan or Asiago cheese

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Place all the ingredients in a food processor, except oil, and pulse. Start to add oil slowly, pulsing until ingredients form a smooth paste.

Note: If you do not use right away, or there are left overs, store in a jar with a layer of olive oil on top to prevent discoloration, and top jar with a tight lid and store in the refrigerator. Will store for 3 to 5 days.

Pesto is no doubt one of the worlds most loved sauces, next to the mayonnaise and the Mexican traditional salsa.

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Spinach Ravioli Lasagna

Spinach Ravioli Lasagna (2)

This is a meal that will keep cancer away. More about that later.

Here is what you will for Spinach Ravioli Lasagna:

1-6 oz. package baby spinach (if using fresh bunched spinach about 30 leaves)

1/3 cup  pesto sauce

1-15 oz. jar Alfredo sauce

¼ cup chicken broth

1-25-oz. package frozen cheese-filled ravioli, do not thaw

1 cup shredded Italian six-cheese blend

Preheat the oven to 375°

You can opt to make your own pesto sauce, but replace the basil with cilantro or parsley. fresh basil is an herb that works best adding to the dish when it is done cooking, as it turns brown and can change the flavor. You can also use cashews or pecans in place of the pine nuts, to save on cost.

Make your own Alfredo with 1 stick of butter, fresh heavy cream, about 1 cup, and 1/2 to 3/4 cup of Parmesan cheese.

cut stems from spinach leaf

When preparing this meal, I opted to used fresh bunched spinach, (30 leaves). With a pair of kitchen shears, cut off stems.

washing and cleaning spinach with Eat Cleaner

You will need to wash the spinach of any unwanted residues or dirt. I do so with Eat Cleaner, which is a food based food cleaner. Generously spray the vegetable leafs and let sit for a few minutes than wash off with water. Eat Cleaner cleans all of your produce, including bacteria that could reside on your meats, such as poultry.

cutting spinach for Spinach Ravioli Lasagna

Once spinach is dried began to cut spinach leaves into small pieces with a pair of kitchen shears. Set aside.

preparing ingredients for Soinach Ravioli Lasagna

Combine chicken broth with pesto sauce. Stir in the Alfredo sauce until will combined. Next drop in the cut spinach leaves and mix into the sauce.

layering ingredients for Spinach Ravioli Lasagna

Spoon one-third of Alfredo sauce mixture, about ½ cup into a lightly greased 2.2-qt. or 11- x 7-inch baking dish. Arrange half of ravioli in a single layer over spinach mixture. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining Alfredo sauce. Top that with the shredded cheese.

fresh cooked Spinach Ravioli Lasagna

Bake for 30 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes. Garnish, if desired. Plate and serve.

Spinach Ravioli Lasagna

As we stated at the on set, this is a great meal to ward off cancer. Spinach is a cruciferous vegetable that kills cancer cells. The salad we have on the plate is a mixture of kale , broccoli, red cabbage, and Brussels sprouts, all which are also cruciferous vegetables.

Just 4 servings a week from this class of vegetables equals the power of eating 10 servings per day of any other vegetable. For more information how food correlates to a healthy you, visit our Health News Library by linking here.

 

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