It’s getting late, the house is empty, and my stomach’s starting to rumble. And what does the warm light of the open fridge tell me? That there’s a meal here somewhere. I scan over the almost empty shelves, the loose vegetables in the drawer, the half empty tub of tesco salsa. It’s time to get problem solving.
Sticky, Spicy, Healthy Vegetarian Sausage Pasta
So here’s what I had to work with:
- Cauldron Vegetarian Sausages (these are really nicely seasoned, and flavoured with rosemary. Totally recommend.)
- Half a tree of broccoli
- A red onion
- Half a head of sweetheart cabbage (A vegetable which I believe is tragically underappreciated these days.)
- Half a tub of fresh salsa, made by the lovely people at Tesco (We didn’t have any chips to dip in this, and it doesn’t last long, so I wanted to use it somehow.)
- A couple of tomatoes
- Some runny honey
- Chilli flakes
- Parmigiano cheese (Though naturally, we’ll call it parmesan.)
- And of course, pasta.
Now the end result of all this was wickedly good (as confirmed by my hungry brother), and so I’ve decided to give a quick run down of how I did it. The point isn’t really to create a recipe that can be followed, it’s more to give an example of how seemingly random ingredients, with a bit of imagination and knowledge, can combine to make something pretty damn tasty. You’re welcome to give it a go, but if you do, switch it up – use whatever’s left rolling around in your kitchen cupboards. You might stumble upon something even better!
P.S. I’ve also not done proper quantities. This isn’t about following recipes, it’s about the opposite. Quantities will depend on how hungry you are, how many ingredients you have, your own tastes and preferences, and your own judgement.
- Chuck a couple of sausages in a large, deep frying pan with little olive oil. Once they’re starting to brown, take them out and cut them into slices, then back in the pan. You might be able to cut them at the very start, but mine were frozen.
- Drizzle some honey over the sausage pieces, sprinkle some chilli flakes, and add in some sliced red onion. This is when things will start to smell really good.
- Whilst those are starting to saute and go all sticky and delicious, get the pasta on the go. I use fusilli because it’s really good at holding onto other ingredients.
- Now add the broccoli stalks to the saucepan – these are perfectly good to use, but they need a headstart on the other veg.
- While you’re waiting, chop the cabbage, the branchy bits of the brocolli, and the tomatoes.
- After a few minutes you can chuck it all in and stir. I think I added a little more olive oil, and another drizzle of honey at this point. Just use your judgement as you go along.
- Next add the salsa – this was a slightly unconventional addition, but it fitted in with the sweetness of the honey and the kick of the chilli. Otherwise, I would have just used some more fresh tomatoes. You want something a little wetter to help bind up all the ingredients and coat everything.
- Finally, add in the drained pasta (though don’t drain it to much – a bit of clinging, starchy pasta water is perfect to help with that binding) and mix it all up. Taste it, season with salt and pepper, then sprinkle over some cheese if you’ve got it.
Serving suggestion: To be enjoyed in massive quantities, whilst sat on the sofa watching TV. Saturday nights don’t get much better than that.