Whether you're celebrating a promotion or just celebrating the fact that you made it to Hump Day, I've got just the dish for you. It's loaded with juicy ground pork, earthy mushrooms, and tangy goat cheese, but the best part is that it comes together in about 30 minutes. If that's not reason to celebrate, I don't know what is.
Note: This recipe calls for plain ground pork and my Italian Countryside Spice Blend, which includes porcini mushroom powder, rosemary, thyme, garlic, onion, and black pepper. If you've run out of Italian Countryside Spice Blend (or just haven't ordered it yet), you can certainly use a sweet Italian sausage instead.
Creamy Weeknight Pasta with Sausage and Mushrooms
Serves 4 (generously)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 pound ground pork
1 large shallot, minced
4-5 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons Italian Countryside Spice Blend
1 pound mixed fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 pound dried pasta of choice (I used spaghetti, but whatever you've got in your pantry will work)
4 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add pork and brown, using a spoon to break it up into small pieces. Once the pork is cooked through transfer it to a bowl and set aside. Add the shallot and garlic to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallot has turned translucent. Transfer the shallot and garlic to the bowl with the pork and set aside. Add the remaining olive oil to the skillet and then add the mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms have started to soften and brown. Return the pork, shallot, and garlic to the skillet and stir to combine. Add the Italian Countryside Spice Blend and stir to combine well. Lower the heat and cook, allowing flavors to meld.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain pasta, reserving about a half cup of pasta cooking water.
Add the cooked pasta and crumbled goat cheese to the skillet and stir to combine, adding a small amount of pasta water to loosen the sauce as needed. Serve immediately.
Suggested Wine Pairing: Try a juicy, yet earthy red, such as a Cotes-du-Rhone or Pinot Noir.