Rigatoni with Cannellini Beans and Spicy ‘Sausage’

Pairing sausage and white beans is a classic Italian combination, like Romeo and Juliet. Lightly spiced and hearty, pasta and beans make the perfect marriage...keeping you feeling nourished and sated, strong, yet free of tension. Ah, harmony...

Makes 5-6 servings

Ingredient List: 

extra virgin olive oil
3-4 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
1 yellow onion, diced
sea salt
8 ounces vegan sausage, crumbled
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup canned diced tomatoes
generous pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1 pound rigatoni
2 cups cooked/canned cannellini beans
3-4 sprigs fresh basil, leaves removed from stems, finely shredded
juice of 1/2 fresh lemon

Step By Step Instructions: 

Place a generous amount of oil, garlic and onion in a deep skillet and turn heat to medium. When the onions begin to sizzle, add a pinch of salt and sauté for 2 minutes. Stir in sausage, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Add a pinch of salt and sauté until the sausage begins to brown, about 3 minutes  Add wine, tomatoes and red pepper flakes, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 15 minutes.

While the sausage mixture cooks, bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook rigatoni al dente, 8-10 minutes. Drain well, but do not rinse.

When the sausage is ready, stir in cannellini beans, season lightly with salt and remove from heat. Stir in basil, lemon juice and cooked rigatoni, mixing well to combine. Serve garnished with whole basil sprigs.