Pumpkin Pasta with Sausage

Sausage and Pumpkin pasta (really!)

This weekend I was a recluse. Mr. Pea, having observed me avoiding Mt. Grading for several days and watching me progress into a basket case, gave me stern orders to sit and grade while he went out for a few hours. I spent much of the weekend on the couch, under a quilt, grading papers on the cross-country trek of some folks in the 19th century to California. So I didn’t post anything, and didn’t cook terribly much, though I did finish my flock of birds I showed you last week. I have a new project, too, that I hope to share with you tomorrow.

At any rate, we ate in on Saturday night before we went to a little party, and I made this pasta dish. I saw it first at Posie Gets Cozy, and thought it might be tasty. And it was! The photo just kind of looks like sunny goodness and doesn’t quite do the dish justice. I tweaked the recipe just a little and was pleased with the results, though it doesn’t reheat all that well (it dries out), so you might want to try it on a night when you know it will all get eaten.

You’ll need:
2-3 links of sweet Italian sausage
1/2 c pumpkin puree
1 c half-and-half
salt and pepper
2 good pinches dried sage
1/4 c grated parmesan
12 oz pasta such as cavatappi or rigatoni

Start by crumbling your sausage out of the casing and frying it up in a wide, deep saute pan over medium heat in a tablespoon or so of olive oil. At the same time, get your water started for the pasta. When it boils, add the pasta and cook until al dente or firm to the bite.

In the meantime, once your sausage is cooked through, add the pumpkin, half-and-half, and spices to the pan, stirring to scrape up bits of sausagey goodness off the bottom of the pan. Keep at a gentle simmer while pasta cooks, and add the cheese, stirring occasionally. When pasta is done, strain and add to the sauce. Toss to coat.

This would be great with a spinach salad but for whatever reason making two separate components for dinner was waaaaay beyond me on Saturday. It must be the mind-numbing goodness of reading the same thing, essentially, over 30 times!

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