Written by Lydia in Main Meals

Pasta is one of my favourite things to eat, I would eat it every day of the week if I could. This is one of my new favourite pasta dishes that we came across whilst watching Rick Stein’s Long Weekends (a fantastic series, if you haven’t checked it out it may still be available on BBC iplayer). This recipe was taken from his trip to Bologna which has now been added to my bucket list of places to go and visit. The combination of cream, cheese, sausage and herbs in this dish is sumptuous.


Serves 4

320g spaghetti or tagliatelle
400g/14oz good quality coarse pork sausage meat
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
¾ tsp fennel seeds, roughly ground in a pestle and mortar
1 sprig of fresh rosemary, leaves finely chopped
¼ tsp chilli flakes
1 large garlic clove, grated
150ml/5fl oz dry white wine
150ml/5fl oz double cream
150ml/5fl oz chicken stock
50g/1¾oz parmesan cheese, freshly grated
salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Break up the sausage meat into a large, lidded pan with a little olive oil (depending on how fatty the sausage meat is as it may render quite a bit of fat). Cook on a medium heat for around 10 minutes, stirring from time to time.
  2. Add the onion, celery, fennel seeds, rosemary, chilli and garlic then cook for a further 15 minutes.
  3. Pour in the wine and cook until reduced in volume by half, then add in the cream and chicken stock.
  4. Season with salt and pepper, then put a lid on the pan and simmer gently for half an hour.
  5. When ready to serve, cook your pasta in plenty of salted water until al dente. Drain and add to the ragù pan and mix in. Serve in warmed bowls with freshly grated Parmesan.


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