White Sausage Pasta with Mushrooms and Greens


  • 1 pound ziti or other cut pasta
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces sweet or hot italian sausage, removed from the casing
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to taste
  • 1 pound greens (escarole, broccoli raab, arugula, spinach, kale, or chicory)
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced


  • Large bowl of ice water
  • Medium Skillet
  • Stock Pot and Strainer
  • Cutting board, Knife


  1. Fill a large bowl with ice water.
  2. Once pasta water comes to a boil, put a pound of washed greens into the pot and blanch for no more than a minute (only 20 seconds for spinach or arugula).
  3. Strain greens out and plunge into ice water. When cool, squeeze dry and roughly chop. Add salt to the pasta water and return to boil.
  4. Saute the mushrooms in the skillet over medium heat for about 10 minutes or until done, place in bowl to reserve.
  5. Put the butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. As it melts, crumble the sausage meat into it, making the bits quite small, 1/2 inch or less.
  6. Add 1/4 cup water, greens and mushrooms and adjust the heat so that the mixture bubbles gently (adding more water if necesary), until the sausage is cooked through and tender, about 5 minutes (sauce can be made up to a day in advance if refrigerated)
  7. Meanwhile, cook the pasta until tender but not mushy. Drain it, reserving about a cup of the cooking water.
  8. Toss the pasta with the sauce, adding some of the reserved cooking water if necesary.
  9. Taste and adjust the seasoning (salt, pepper), then toss with the Parmesan and serve.

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