Sausage and Pepperonata Bucatini

Aired April 9, 2010

Serves Serves 2 as entre or 3-4 as a side or starter
1/2 pound bucatini
2 tablespoons EVOO Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 pound store-bought bulk, Italian sweet sausage
1 small red or yellow onion, finely chopped
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
Black pepper
1 red, plus 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, quartered lengthwise, then thinly sliced
1 cubanelle pepper, seeded and halved lengthwise then thinly sliced across
1 tablespoon sugar
About 3 tablespoons white, balsamic vinegar
A handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
A handful of basil leaves, torn or shredded
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, a handful, plus some to pass at table

Heat a pot of water to boil for pasta, salt water and cook to al dente. Heads up: take out about 1/4 cup starchy water just before you drain pasta.

While pasta water comes to a boil and pasta cooks, heat EVOO, a couple of turns of the pan, in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage, brown and crumble then add onions and garlic and soften a couple of minutes. Add peppers and cook to tender, 7-8 minutes more. Sprinkle in sugar then add vinegar to dissolve it and deglaze with starchy cooking water. Add drained pasta to pan, toss pasta with parsley, basil and cheese.