Chestnut Orecchiette with Pork Sausage, Broccoli di Cicco, and White Beans | CUESA

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Chestnut Orecchiette with Pork Sausage, Broccoli di Cicco, and White Beans


David Bazirgan, Dirty Habit

This recipe was demonstrated for CUESA’s Market to Table program on November 21, 2015.

Serves 4


100 grams zero zero flour
100 grams semolina
100 grams warm water
25 grams chestnut flour

Sausage Ragu
1 pound Italian-style pork sausage meat, casings removed
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon chile flakes
2 bunches broccoli di cicco, blanched
½ cup white wine
2 cups cooked white beans
2 cups poultry stock
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and pepper
Small wedge pecorino Toscano cheese


To make the orecchiette: Combine the ingredients in the work bowl of a stand mixer and, with a paddle attachment, mix for 10 minutes. Allow the pasta dough to rest for at least 30 minutes to relax the gluten before proceeding. Cut the dough into quarters with a pastry cutter and roll the pieces into thick worm shapes. Cut into ½ inch nuggets. Then, using your thumb, create “little ears” by rolling your thumb into a semi-circle. Set the orecchiette aside on a sheet tray at room temperature for up to 8 hours, or freeze until ready to use.

To make the ragu: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, sauté the sausage in the olive oil, breaking it into chunks as it cooks. After it has cooked for 2-3 minutes and the sausage has some nice color, add the garlic and chili flakes, reduce the heat to low, and sauté for 30 seconds. Add the broccoli, white wine, and beans. Reduce the wine until dry, then add the stock and reduce by half. Add the butter and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside and keep warm until ready to finish.

To finish: Cook the pasta in the boiling salted water for 2 minutes, or until al dente. Toss with the ragu. Finish by grating the pecorino cheese over the top and serve immediately.


CUESA (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) is dedicated to cultivating a sustainable food system through the operation of farmers markets and educational programs. Learn More »