Recipe Review: Rigatoni Pugliese (Rigatoni with Spicy Sausage, Chickpeas, and Broccoli Rabe)


This hearty dish is Italian comfort food perfect for cool fall and winter evenings, from Andrew Carmellini’s Urban Italian cookbook.  The rich, creamy sauce is made without the use of heavy cream or butter.  The secret is that prepared tomato sauce is thickened with pureed chickpeas that add both flavor and texture.  I have tried making Chef Carmellini’s basic tomato sauce in the past, but was not successful – I think that recipe calls for too much olive oil.  Instead, I used my go-to basic tomato sauce, from Todd English’s Figs cookbook, as the base for this sauce.  Cooking takes less than 30 minutes – brown some spicy Italian sausage, puree chickpeas in a blender, and simmer with tomato sauce for 15 minutes.  Meanwhile, boil water, blanch the broccoli rabe for 90 seconds, then saute in olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and chickpeas.  Boil the rigatoni, toss with the sauce, and top with the broccoli rabe, chickpeas, and grated parmesan or pecorino.  The recipe calls for adding additional butter and olive oil when tossing the pasta with the sauce, but I think the sauce is definitely good enough to stand on its own.

Link to recipe here.

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3 thoughts on “Recipe Review: Rigatoni Pugliese (Rigatoni with Spicy Sausage, Chickpeas, and Broccoli Rabe)

  1. I just prepared this last weekend and I agree that his basic tomato sauce calls for way too much olive oil. It all fell right into place at the end and was quite delicious. However, I felt it was not necessary for me to go through nearly 2 hours of tomato sauce cooking for this recipe. I will try a different sauce next time. Maybe yours. 😉

  2. Pingback: Recipe Review: Rigatoni with Spicy Calabrese-Style Pork Ragu | testerfoodblog

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