This recipe comes from Marcella Hazan, who is what many consider, the ultimate goddess of Italian cooking. One of my first apartments in NY was in the Italian section of Wiliamsburg which is centered around Graham Avenue. Both sides of the street are lined with Italian butcher shops and sweet shops, nestled in between the cupcake shops and cocktail bars that this new wave of gentrification has brought. The butcher shops feel so old school and the guys behind the counter, in their blood stained aprons call you “sweetheart” and they mean it.
In this apartment in the Italian neighborhood also lived an Italian and he liked to cook almost every night like I did. This posed a problem for our tiny kitchen and our tiny sink was always filled with remnants of the dueling meals that had been prepared simultaneously the night before. More often than not, he was making Italian. There was a pizza stone, so that happened. Meat balls, breaded chicken cutlets, stews, salads, risottos, all of it. But this dish was his speciality, at least in my eyes. Use San Marzano tomatoes, seriously.
Pasta with Sausage and Tomato Cream Sauce
You will need:
1/2 box dried spaghetti pasta
14 oz whole canned San Marzano tomatoes (they come in 28 oz cans, so use 1/2 can)
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 sweet italian sausages – cut into 1 inch pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp chopped Italian parsley
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
1. Boil the pasta in a large pot of salted water for 10 minutes (or whatever your box says) and set aside.
2. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the sausages to the pan and brown for about 4 minutes. Pull 5-7 tomatoes (about 1 cup crushed, maybe more) out of the can and crush them with your hands right into the pan. Add a pinch of salt.
3. Let the tomatoes and sausage cook and reduce for about 20 minutes. If you have more time, turn the heat to low and let them cook for much longer (40 min). You will loose some of the liquid, but if the tomatoes get too dry, add more tomatoes gradually.
4. After the tomatoes have reduced, add the cream and 1/2 the chopped parsley and 1/2 of the parmesan.
5. Add the pasta directly into the pan and serve in bowls, sprinkled with parsley and parmesan.