Oli, this is one of my favorite pasta dishes to eat and it's super easy to make...yes, even you can't mess this up! I know you can't eat the spicy food, so I guess you can use mild Italian sausage. But this dish just isn't the same without spicy sausage and a few pinches of crushed red pepper. Suck it up!
1. Ingredients: Orecchiette (little ear pasta), spicy Italian sausage, kale, parmesan, olive oil, garlic, red pepper, salt.
2. So first, take the sausage out of the casing. Just cut down length-wise, deep enough to just pierce the casing. Break apart the meat and put it in the pan with a little a olive oil.
3. Cook the sausage until browned and some of the fat has rendered out.
4. Take the cooked sausage out of the pan and drain out some of the sausage fat. Put a little olive oil in the pan and add the sliced garlic. Saute the garlic on low heat for a couple minutes until they soften - don't let them burn!
5. When the garlic is cooked a little, put in a little more olive oil and the chopped and washed kale. I only used the greens and not the stems. But if I was going to put the kale in a soup or braise it, I would definitely use the stalks too.
6. Toss the kale in the pan and season with a pinch of salt. Cook the kale until it wilts and is bright green, but the cooking time will depend on how crunchy you want it - I like the kale to have some bite so I cook it for about 10 minutes. Add back the sausage and toss all together. Sorry I didin't take a picture of it!
Hopefully during this time, you cooked the pasta in salted water. Before you drain the pasta, save some of that pasta water for the sauce, about a cup. After you drain it, toss it back in the pan with the sausage, garlic, and kale. Fold all the ingredients together. You can use some more olive oil to coat the ingredients and add another pinch of salt and some crushed red pepper. Also grate in a lot of parmesan cheese and fold that in as well. Then pour the pasta water into the dish so everything comes together to form a sauce for the pasta. This recipe is pretty foolproof...just keep throwing things in and mixing it up! If you mess it up, I really can't help you. Enjoy!