Fennel and sausage ragu with tagliatelle

On Tuesday evening, with Fig on holiday and thus unavailable, I had the lovely Phil Dukes over for dinner and Doctor Who. (we opted for the The Androids of Tara, which follows on from The Stones of Blood, which we watched last time.) This gave me the opportunity to select a recipe from the other new cook book that I got for my birthday – Rick Stein’s Long Weekends, which Vanessa and Matt got for me. There are loads of lovely recipes in there, but this one caught my eye. It looked tasty, full of flavours and fairly quick and easy to do, as well as being filling enough to serve all three of us. (Alberto was working late, so I’d promised him dinner for when he got home.)

I was slightly hampered by the fact that Sainsbury’s only sell sausagemeat at Christmas (daft – you might want to make Scotch Eggs, or sausage pie at any time of year!) but I got some pork sausages, skinned them and that worked fine.

The recipe gives instructions and ingredients for making your own fresh tagliatelle, however, I didn’t have the time or the inclination (or a pasta machine) to make it fresh, so I opted for fresh tagliatelle from Sainsbury’s.

Serves 4

400g of coarse pork sausagemeat
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 large garlic clove, grated
2 sticks of celery, chopped (or 1 fat leek)
¾ of a teaspoon of fennel seeds, roughly ground (I left the seeds whole, and that was fine)
½ a teaspoon of chilli flakes
A sprig of fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon of salt
Freshly ground black pepper (about 10—12 turns of the grinder)
150ml of dry white wine
150ml of double cream
150ml of chicken stock
50g of grated Parmiggianno or Parmesan to serve
Sufficient fresh tagliatelle for four
In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over a medium heat and then add the sausagemeat, breaking it up as you fry it, with a wooden spoon. Fry over a medium heat, stirring regularly, for 10 minutes or so, until nicely browned and cooked through.

Add the onions, fennel seeds, chilli flakes, rosemary and salt and pepper and stir well to combine, and cook for 10 minutes or so, until the onion has started to soften.

Pour in the wine, using it to deglaze the bottom of the pan, and cook for a few minutes until the wine is reduced by half.

Then add the cream and chicken stock. Stir well. Pop a lid on the pan and simmer the mixture gently for half an hour, stirring occasionally.

Cook the tagliatelle as per the instructions on the packet. Once cooked, drain.

Once the creamy mixture is cooked and the sauce has thickened, add the cooked tagliatelle and combine well.

Serve immediately, sprinkled with the Parmiggianio


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About neilche

Hi. My name's Neil. I live in Brighton with my flatmate (also Neil) and I work as a Librarian at a local college. I like cooking, eating and socialising with friends. Which is what prompted me to start this blog. I cycle everywhere around town - it helps to work off the calories!
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2 Responses to Fennel and sausage ragu with tagliatelle

  1. v buttimer says:

    Is there not still a poncey sausage vendor opposite and a couple doors up from the hatters?

    • neilche says:

      Oh yes, there is, but I couldn’t be bothered to go up there after work. Bought some lovely sausage rolls there the other week for my train journey to Devon. Nx

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