I was ready to make a seafood dish for this month’s Italian Food, Wine and Travel event, then I realized Umbria is one of the few landlocked regions in Italy. Let’s go with some land-based food!
I read that pork is popular in Umbria, including sausages, so I figured it was time to make another sausage and pasta dish. I like the way sausage goes along with greens, so today I’m serving up Rigatoni with Collard Greens and Sausage. I used sweet Italian sausages in this dish, and also added some olives, which are also popular in Umbria.
Collard greens are loaded with nutrients. Some folks haven’t warmed up to them yet, but the key is cooking them long enough via a braising method. And cooking them up with something tasty like sausage or bacon helps! For more healthy and tasty recipes with greens, check out my Collards & Kale Cookbook. Today’s Rigatoni with Collard Greens and Sausage recipe follows the wine pairing details.
Wine Pairing: I quickly decided to go with a wine from Perticaia, from which I’ve enjoyed several different bottles previously. They are based in Montefalco, which sounds like a gorgeous place, perched high in the Colli Martani with a great view of the surrounding countryside.
I was making the Rigatoni with Collard Greens and Sausage midweek, so I decided to go with on of the wineries entry level bottles, the 2013 Perticaia Umbria Rosso ($14, 13% ABV). The wine is a blend of 80% Sangiovese, 10% Colorino and 10% Merlot.
I get fresh berry on the nose. Fruit forward taste, with a bit of duskiness on the back. Softens nicely in the glass, and goes very well with the sausage in the pasta dish. At this price, this food-friendly wine is a great candidate for everyday drinking with a simple weekday pasta meal!
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- ½ orange or yellow bell pepper
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 medium sweet Italian sausages
- 1 bunch collard greens, stems removed and coarsely chopped
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- pinch red pepper flakes
- ½ cup parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup sliced olives
- 12 ozs rigatoni or other short pasta shape
- salt to taste
- Coat a large skillet with oil spray, and heat to medium high. Add the sausage to the pan, cook about 5 minutes, turning occasionally to brown the sausage. Remove the sausage and set aside for later.
- Add 1 tablespoon olive oil in the skillet, then stir in onions to sauté. After the onion has cooked for a few minutes, add the peppers.
- Sauté the onions and peppers for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic, cook for another minute.
- Start boiling water for the pasta at this time.
- Stir the collard greens into the skillet, doing so in a few batches to allow them a minute to cook down. Add the broth, red pepper flakes and salt to taste.
- Cover the skillet, and cook the greens for 10 minutes on medium low.
- Cut the chicken sausage into thin slices, then stir into the skillet after the greens have cooked for 10 minutes. Cook another 10 minutes covered. Stir up the sausage and greens, and keep warm on low heat while the pasta finishes cooking.
- Start cooking the pasta around the same time you add the sausage to the pan, and cook according to package instructions.
- Remove the cover from the skillet, stir, and cook another 5 minutes uncovered. Keep warm while the pasta finishes cooking.
- Drain the pasta. Toss with the remaining tbsp olive oil, then stir in the sausage and greens, followed by the cheese. Serve and enjoy with a glass of red wine--preferably from Umbria!
Italian Food Wine & Travel Posts on Umbria
Take a look at all the great Umbrian posts this month! If you’re available on Saturday Oct. 3 at 11 am EDT, we’d love you to join our Twitter conversation at #ItalianFWT.
Vino Travels: Immersion in Umbrian wine with Sagrantino
The Palladian Traveler – Marcello’s Big Fat Italian Christening
Food Wine Click – Orange is the New Red: Paolo Bea Santa Chiara & Umbrian Steak
Orna O’Reilly – Castelluccio di Norcia: On the Rooftop of the Apennines
Culinary Adventures with Camilla – Roasted Flank Steak with Zucchini Mint Pesto with an Umbrian Merlot
Italophilia – Visiting Assisi in the Enchanting Umbrian Hills
Rockin Red Blog – Beauty and the Beast
Enofylz Wine Blog – Umbria’s Sagrantino: Call It a Comeback
The Wining Hour – Taste Umbria – Black Truffle Linguini with Shrimp & Montefalco Sagrantino
Cooking Chat – Rigatoni with Collard Greens & Sausage with Wine from Umbria
Flavourful Tuscany – Umbrian Cuisine and Fun facts