I did two unthinkable things today...
...I used bottled sauce...
...and I used pecorino!
Now please allow me to explain.
First, is that there is this wonderful Italian Deli up in Cox's Road in East Ryde and I've been wanting to buy out that store for quite some time now. I am also a regular feaster of their lasagna.
Today, I had a squiz at their selection of pasta sauces on the shelves, and picked out Siena Homestyle Mediterranean Sauce. The original plan was to do a Chorizo and black olives dish, so I thought the sauce to be just perfect for the occasion, but to my shock horror the store was out of chorizo and I ended up having to pick up a couple of Italian Sausages instead.
Now would it not be appropriate of me to end that paragraph with "FML"?
Above is the cast of this pasta. Wouldn't I would be terribly out of character if I remembered everything when I took the picture?
It's missing the garlic and these babies:
Slice up the sundried tomatoes into strips. I'm still torn as to whether I prefer semi-dried or sundried.
First I fried up the Italian Sausages so that I could cut them up into smaller pieces. The smell was really quite divine at this point.
Next the onions, garlic and bacon were sauteed in a saucepan until the onions turned transparent.
Don't you just love the smell of this? It makes me salivate everytime.
After the onions are transparent, I poured in the bottled sauce and black olives, along with sundried tomatoes and the chopped up bits of sausage.
Just let it simmer for a bit on the side while you prepare the prawns.
Use a grill for this if you have one, but panfrying will do just fine. Whatever you do, just don't overcook it. Flip it as soon as the prawn colours.
Next, I grated pecorino. I hate grating things, but I really can't bear to use pre-grated stuff.
Toss the prawns into the sauce and sprinkle with a little pecorino. There's about a tonne in that photo above, and the stuff is really quite strong (stinky). Seeing it was the first time I used the stuff, I sprinkled it quite cautiously.
Forgive me, I love cheese. Just give me a moment here.
Next, combine the sauce and the cooked pasta. I always like to cook the two together in a pan separately just before serving so that the sauce sticks to the pasta a little better. It also helps when your pasta is drying out because you mistimed the cooking process like I did today.
I also burnt my sauce today and had to change pots. But you don't know that.
Hopefully by the end you should get insanity in a pot. Feel free to demolish half the pan before it even makes it to the table. You will be forgiven.
Penne with Italian Sausages, Prawn and Sundried Tomatoes
Serves: the family
3 Italian Sausages
100g Black Kalamata Olives, pitted and sliced in half
10 slices of sundried tomatoes (feel free to use more/less)
1/2 cup Pecorino, grated
1 Onion, diced
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
12 Prawns, peeled (I don't measure prawns by weight. I don't think people would care how much prawn they were getting by weight)
840mL Siena Homestyle Mediterranean Pasta Sauce
2 rashers Short Cut Bacon, sliced
As much pasta as you think you can finish, depending on your pasta-to-sauce ratio
Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- Boil pasta in salted water until al dente. Set aside
- Pan fry Italian sausages until cooked. Cut into 1.5cm pieces. Set aside
- In a saucepan, saute onions, garlic, and bacon until onions are transparent
- Pour bottled sauce and bring to simmer
- Add sundried tomatoes, black olives and Italian sausages. Cover and simmer for 10 mins.
- Meanwhile, panfry or grill prawns until just cooked
- Toss prawns into the pot with grated pecorino and stir gently until prawns are coated in sauce. Turn off heat (Optional: add black pepper to taste)
- Before serving, in a shallow pan, toss sauce with pasta over heat. Serve with extra grated pecorino on top