|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 14g||18%|
|Saturated Fat 2g||10%|
|Total Carbohydrate 23g||8%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||8%|
|Total Sugars 3g|
|Vitamin C 4mg||22%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Although pasta isn't always associated with Spain, it is a fairly common staple on tables across the country. Its vicinity to Italy makes it the perfect place where both cuisines can blend, like in this flavorful recipe for pasta with chorizo. Both countries consider pasta to be a first course, rather than the main course, but this flavorful recipe yields four filling and generous servings.
Spanish chorizo is a spicy pork sausage that's garlicky and flavored with pimentón (paprika) and is a very specific ingredient that can't be replaced with Mexican chorizo, as they offer flavor profiles that are very distinct. Spanish chorizo is usually cured, whereas Mexican is sold raw. The closest approximation to the Spanish version would be a very spicy sausage that you can further flavor to with paprika, or Portuguese linguica sausage.
True Spanish chorizo can be found in most upscale supermarkets packed with specialty meats in the charcuterie and cheese section.
"The combination of chorizo and smoked paprika smelled and tasted heavenly. The sauce is very rich and flavorful. I tried it both with and without Manchego cheese and it tasted great either way. If you can't find Manchego, I believe Pecorino Romano or cheddar would also work well." —Tara Omidvar
1 medium yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 red bell pepper
1 8-ounce Spanish semi-cured chorizo (case removed)
1/4 cup Spanish extra virgin olive oil (divided)
1 (24-ounce) can of crushed tomatoes (or 24 ounces of fresh pulsed tomatoes)
1 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 pound penne (macaroni or spaghetti)
1/4 cup shaved Manchego cheese
Gather the ingredients.
Peel and chop the onion into 1/4-inch chunks.
Peel and finely chop the cloves of garlic.
Remove the seeds and veins from the pepper and dice.
Remove the case from the chorizo, if not already done—semi-cured and cured chorizos have an inedible case. Once peeled, cut the chorizo into round slices about 1/4-inch thick.
Place a large skillet over medium heat and add about half of the olive oil. Once hot enough, sauté the onion, garlic, pepper, and chorizo slices in the pan. Stir often and be mindful that the smoking point of olive oil is different than other oils; when it begins to smoke, the flavor will change. If any ingredients begin sticking to the bottom of the pan, add the remaining olive oil.
Once the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes, add the crushed tomatoes.
Sprinkle the paprika on the sauce. Lower the heat and cook on medium-low for 10 minutes, occasionally stirring.
Bring water for pasta to a rolling boil in a large pot while the sauce cooks.
Check on the sauce, tasting for seasoning, and add salt if necessary. Remove from heat.
Plate the pasta in individual serving bowls and add sauce on top of each. Alternatively, present the dish family-style in a big serving bowl. If using, add shaved cheese on top.
What Else to Do with Chorizo Sauce?
Don't limit this sauce to serving over pasta. This delicious mixture can be incorporated into other flavorful recipes:
- Sandwiches: Cut open a whole baguette and pour the sauce on top. Top with Manchego cheese or a big handful or Pecorino and bake at 350 F for 15 minutes. Slice the baguette in four sandwiches and serve.
- Flatbread: Make individual flatbreads by topping four small naan breads with the sauce. Add a handful of sliced black olives on top of each naan and bake at 350 F for 10 minutes. Garnish with some fresh arugula and a few drops of extra virgin olive oil.
- Crostini: Slice a whole baguette, spray with olive oil, sprinkle salt and pepper, and bake at 350 F until crunchy. Top each crostini with a tablespoon of the sauce and serve as a small appetizer with some green and black olives on the side.