“Using best-quality sausages and tomatoes gives this from-scratch version of Sarah’s favourite comfort food a real smack of flavour. Finish with freshly grated Parmesan and fresh basil, it's a real step up from the microwave meals Sarah's used to. ”
Peel the onion, carrot and celery, then finely chop with the basil stalks (reserving the leaves).
Place a large pan on a medium-high heat with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, then squeeze the sausagemeat out of the skins into the pan, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as you go. Fry for a few minutes, then add the fennel seeds, oregano and chilli flakes, and strip in the rosemary.
Stir in the chopped veg and basil stalks, then peel and finely grate in the garlic. Cook for 10 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally.
Pour the balsamic into the pan and leave to bubble away and reduce slightly. Scrunch in the tomatoes through your clean hands, then add 1 tin’s worth of water and the larger basil leaves. Bring to the boil, then simmer over a low heat for 20 minutes, or until thickened.
With around 10 minutes to go, cook the pasta in a pan of boiling salted water according to the packet instructions, then drain, reserving a mugful of cooking water.
Toss the drained pasta into the sausage pan, loosening with a little reserved cooking water, if needed. Taste and season to perfection with sea salt and black pepper, then remove from the heat.
Finely grate in the Parmesan, scatter over the remaining basil leaves, and finish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Delicious served with pinches of lemony rocket and an extra grating of Parmesan.