Being accused of hyperbole is nothing new to me. In fact it happens almost on a daily basis. I don’t mind this really, because in a way I choose (in a sort of ‘glass half-full’ thing) to take it as an indication that at least I’m still getting excited about things that are happening around me.
Which is a useful knack when two separate sets of pilots choose to miss the runway with planes that I happen to be in at the time. ‘Tail-wind,’ my ass.
So, this hyperbole thing is probably how, on a particular weekend evening, I found myself having an almost United Nations level of intense debate over who manufactures the toilet paper with the puppies printed on it. This was of course fueled by jagermeister and beer and was ridiculous on many levels, but seemed super important at the time. I am adamant that it’s Kleenex, my opponent says it’s Twinsaver. However, after our various standpoints had been exhausted (there is after all, only so long you can say “But it’s Kleenex!”), the only option was to drunkenly google the answer. It which point it turned that we were both wrong and that it’s neither, but the company that does actually manufacture the puppy toilet paper (which is in itself an incredibly odd thing – because if you think about it – wiping your bum with a small dog is really not fun…) it also owns Kleenex, so I felt vaguely vindicated and drank my weight in tequila in celebration.
This brings us to sausage pasta.
Because if there’s anything a human being needs in the wreckage and aftermath of a night where the highlight of the evening was alcoholic Agave Juice and a debate about toilet paper, then it’s a large plate of something to soak up all the idiocy from the night before.
And so, in attempt to rescue my poor savaged self the next day – this is what I turned to. And thank god, because it really ended up being the best thing since the invention of Stockings As Pants on girls.
See? Hyperbole. It’s not so bad.
Italian Sausage and Macadamia Nut Pasta
Ingredients (for 2)
2 large Italian-style sausages (spend a bit of time sourcing the best you can get your hands on – it really will make or break this)
1 red onion
1 chili (medium strength)
1 large clove of garlic
1 tbspn dried oreganum
1 tbspn of olive oil
1 healthy splash of sherry
a handful of crushed (unsalted) macadamia nuts
parsley (finely chopped)
Parmesan cheese (finely grated)
What to do.
First things first – remove the sausage meat from the casings. It’s a bit of a finicky job; you have to cut open one end of the sausage and then gently squeeze all the meat out, but once you get going it’s generally okay. Rubbing your hands with a little olive oil before starting also helps.
Then, finely chop the red onion, garlic and the chili (de-seeded if you don’t want the extra heat). Heat the olive oil in a large pan, then add the onion, chili, sausage meat, garlic and dried oreganum. It should all be sizzling nicely, so make sure that you keep stirring and moving it all about so that nothing catches and burns.
As the sausage and onion is starting to take on a crispier, more golden look (about 7 – 10 minutes should do it…), add the sherry and keep stirring. It’ll bubble like mad for a bit and then the alcohol will mostly burn off, but everything should now have a rich, sweetish glaze to it.
At this point, turn the heat down a bit (to a simmering temperature) add the nuts and the cream – and after it’s all gotten to know each other, taste and season with salt and pepper.
Serve with a pasta of your choice with a good dose of the fresh chopped parsley and grated parmesan.