Penne con Salsicce

Pasta Quills with Sausages

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • 6


Appears in

Alastair Little's Italian Kitchen

Alastair Little's Italian Kitchen

By Alastair Little

Published 1996

  • About

Italian sausages are wonderful as a meal but crumbled up and cooked with onions and a tomato sauce, make a hearty and deeply satisfying pasta sauce.


  • 500 g penne rigate
  • 400 g Italian sausages, spicy if possible
  • 6 tbsp good olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and sliced into rings
  • 500 ml Rich Tomato Sauce
  • salt and pepper


Heat half the olive oil in a saucepan and sweat the onion rings over a medium heat. They should collapse and colour lightly. This takes half an hour or so, and only needs the occasional stir. While this is cooking make the tomato sauce if you don’t have any ready. Again while the onions are simmering, peel the sausages. This is done by running them under a cold tap then gently but firmly pulling off the skins. Chop into bite-sized pieces.

Put the remaining oil into a large non-stick frying pan and brown the sausage pieces. It doesn’t matter if they break up or stick, simply chisel them free. When they are brown add the by now collapsed onions and the tomato sauce. Simmer together for 20 minutes. The sauce is now ready. It can be cooled and stored for up to 3 days.

Put 5 litres lightly salted water on to boil, half an hour before you wish to eat. Reheat the sauce in a large pan (and heat a serving bowl if using one). Put a colander into the sink. Boil the pasta for 8–9 minutes and check if done. Drain and add to the sauce. Toss thoroughly and serve. No Parmesan is needed.