Escarole with Italian Sausage and White Beans

Escarole with Italian Sausage and White Beans

Escarole with Italian Sausage and White Beans
Serve with penne pasta- This is my favorite meal to eat at our local Italian neighborhood haunt, CDB Southside in Tampa. I love the simplicity of rustic Italian food and decided it was time I recreated this at home. It was a huge hit with my family and neighborhood kids who were eager to taste test for me.
    Servings
    4-5people
    Cook Time
    20-25minutes
    Meal Plan
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    Servings
    4-5people
    Cook Time
    20-25minutes
    Meal Plan
    Add to Meal Plan:
    This recipe has been added to your Meal Plan
    Ingredients
    • 8ounce penne pasta, uncooked
    • 2tablespoon olive or coconut oil
    • 2 1/2pound Italian sausage (mild or hot), cut into 2” slices
    • 1 onion, chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves
    • 1 large bunch of escarole, coarsely chopped
    • 1/4teaspoon red pepper flakes
    • 1/2cup white wine
    • 1/4cup chicken stock*
    • 2tablespoon butter
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • 1/2cup Freshly grated parmesan cheese, optional
    Instructions
    1. Bring a large pot of water to boil for the pasta. Cook pasta according to package directions, drain, cover and set aside to keep warm.
    2. Heat oil in large sauté pan over medium high heat. Add sausage pieces and brown for 3-5 minutes each side (you may need to complete in two batches depending on the size of your skillet). Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon, reserving the oil in the pan. Transfer sausage to a plate and set aside.
    3. Add onions to skillet and sauté until onions are translucent, about 1-2 minutes. Add garlic and continuously stir until garlic is fragrant but not burning, about 30 seconds. Stir in the escarole and red pepper flakes, sautéing until escarole is wilted. Pour in the wine and chicken stock, simmer for about 2-3 minute to reduce some of the alcohol. Add in the sausage and butter, stirring to combine and reheat the sausage. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve over the penne pasta and with freshly grated parmesan cheese, if desired.
    Recipe Notes

    * I like to cut the white wine with a little chicken stock, but you may use all chicken stock or all white wine.

    Escarole is related to chicory and while rather bland raw, acquires a slightly tart, earthy taste when cooked. It is the perfect green to compliment the hearty sausage and really soaks up the buttery wine sauce. It is not so bitter, however, to overpower the dish. Kids, surprisingly, like it served this way which is a great way to get a bitter green into their diet.

    I have not tried to supplement any other greens in the recipe, as the escarole is what gives this dish its distinct (and addictive) flavor, but if you find another green you’d like to substitute, let me know.

    This dish is easy to make gluten free by eating it by itself (my preference) or with rice-based penne pasta (my favorite line is Tinkyada).

    I regularly make this with chicken Italian sausage with just as good success.

    Even though this is an Italian dish and should be cooked in olive oil, my cooking oil of choice is coconut. So when I prepare this in coconut oil, I usually finish it tableside with a good drizzle of olive oil.

    Try not to skip the butter. It really adds a layer of flavor that is very distinct to this dish. Keep in mind that a high quality, grass fed butter, as well as olive oil are healthy fats. Don’t be afraid to include them in your cooking. In braised dishes such as this sausage, beans and greens recipe, they are used in small amount but add huge flavor.

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