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Orecchiette, broccoli, sausage and fennel seeds

Orecchiette, broccoli, sausage and fennel seeds

Brought to you by: OcadoLife
    4 serving

Prep time:

Cook time:

Serves: 4

Orecchiette is the perfect pasta shape for this recipe by Matt Williamson, holding the chunks of sausage and fragrant fennel seeds in its crevices. 
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Ingredients

  • 200g fine semolina or polenta, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 4 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
  • 4 pork sausages, sausage skins removed and meat broken into small pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 small head of broccoli, cut into small florets and stalk diced
  • 1 small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes , or to taste (optional)
  • 50g parmesan, finely grated

Method

Step 1

Put the semolina into a large bowl with 100ml warm water and mix well. Tip onto a clean surface lightly dusted with semolina and knead for 5 mins, until smooth and supple. Add a bit more semolina if the dough seems too wet – you want a firm plasticine consistency. Alternatively, use a stand mixer with a dough hook. After kneading, wrap the dough – or put it in an airtight container – and rest for 30 mins at room temperature.

Step 2

To shape the dough, dust a clean surface well with semolina, then, working in batches, cut the dough into 1-2cm cubes. Use your thumb or a small, rounded knife to push each piece of dough down on the surface, dragging it across the surface as you do so – this stretches the dough and creates curled edges. Then lightly mould each piece over your thumb to create a domed inside-out ear shape. Place in a single layer on a tray dusted with semolina while you shape the rest of the dough.

Step 3

In a large saucepan over a medium-low heat, fry the onion in the olive oil for about 8 mins, or until soft. Add the sausage meat to the pan and cook for 6-8 mins, until it’s cooked through and beginning to colour in places. Add the garlic and fennel seeds and cook for a further 30 secs. Remove from the heat and keep warm to one side.

Step 4

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, add the broccoli florets and stalk and cook for 5-8 mins until very tender, then add the orecchiette and cook for 4 mins on a fast boil. The broccoli will overcook – you want this to happen. When the pasta is cooked, drain with the broccoli, reserving a cup of the cooking water.

Step 5

Tip the broccoli and pasta into the sausage and onion mixture, stirring well to coat. Add the parsley, season with salt and add chilli to taste, if using. Loosen the mixture with a drizzle of olive oil and a slosh of the reserved cooking water, if you like. Serve topped with grated parmesan.

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