It's been quite some time since I've posted a recipe that didn't highlight an ingredient or feature a culinary backstory rivaling the Old Testament in word count, so today I offer you a basic, straightforward recipe that is both easy and fun to prepare. All of the ingredients used are simple and easy to find, but if for some reason you cannot find broccoli rabe, kale, escarole, or collard greens would be acceptable substitutes.
1 lb. dried linguine
1 28oz. can whole tomatoes, or 2 lbs. fresh tomatoes
2 t. fennel seeds
2 t. dried oregano
1 T. butter
salt and pepper
grated pecorino, to serve
Cook the pasta. In the meantime, heat a generous splash of olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and brown it, separating it into bite-sized chunks with a wooden spoon as it cooks. Cook for a minute or two, then add the sliced onion. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft.
Next, add the chopped broccoli rabe and saute for about 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally, until the leafy bits of the broccoli rabe have wilted.
Once you've added the pasta to the pot with the sauce, toss gently so that each strand is coated. Add the butter, salt, and pepper, and toss again until the butter has melted. Serve in individual bowls, topped with freshly grated pecorino romano.