White beans and greens is a classic Italian combination, something for which you really don’t need a recipe but occasionally there are some really good ideas out there. The beauty of this dish, is how some of the beans are used to create a velvety sauce and some remain plump and whole. I hope you enjoy it!
Pasta with White Beans and Greens
adapted from “Sausage, Greens, and Beans Pasta” published in Bon Appétit, October 2016
- 8–12 ounces pasta Rustichella d'Abruzzo
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 8 ounces Italian sausage, about 2 links, removed from casings Bozeman Co-Op fresh Italian sausage
- ¼ cup white wine or vermouth
- 1 15-ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed or 2 cups home cooked Rancho Gordo beans
- 2 bunches winter greens (escarole, chard, or kale), stems removed and leaves torn into pieces
- ¾ cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- flake salt and freshly ground black pepper Maldon
Set a large pot of water to boil for the pasta. Heat oil in large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausage pieces and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove sausage to a plate and set aside. Off heat, add wine to the pan, return to heat and deglaze (boil and scrape up the sausage drippings with a wooden spoon).
Add salt to the pasta water and drop the pasta. Cook until al dente, save 1 cup cooking water, and drain pasta.
Add the beans to the deglazed pan and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Transfer half the beans to the sausage plate. Add the greens to the beans in the pan with about ¼ cup pasta cooking water. Steam and cook until greens are tender (about 10 minutes for kale, less for chard and even less for escarole).
Add cooked pasta to the beans and greens, add butter, ½ cup Parmesan, and enough reserved pasta cooking water to make a velvety sauce (about ½–¾ cup). Return the reserved sausage and beans to the pan and heat through. Ready to serve! At the table, pass additional parmesan, salt and pepper.