Prep 35 mins
Cook 25 mins
The picture in Bonappeit magazine looked so yummy. I can't wait to make it. *Please note the review from Whatcha got cookin about the fennel. I would reduce the fennel to your liking to avoid the overkill of the fennel.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large fennel bulb, trimmed, halved through core, thinly sliced lengthwise (about three cups)
- 1 lb hot Italian sausage, casings removed, sausage coarsely crumbled
- 1 (8 ounce) packageof sliced fresh cremini mushrooms (baby bella)
- 4 large garlic cloves, pressed
- 1 tablespoon fennel seed, coarsely crushed
- 1⁄2 cup whipping cream
- 1 cup low sodium chicken broth, more if needed
- 16 ounces pesto filled tortellini, packaged
- 1 (5 ounce) packageof fresh baby spinach leaves
- 1⁄2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- Heat oil in nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add sliced fennel bulb, sausage and mushrooms; saute until sausage is brown and cooked through and fennel is almost tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Add garlic and fennel seeds; stir 1 minute.
- Stir in cream, then one cup of broth; boil until liquid is reduced and very slightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Cook tortellini in large pot just until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain and return to pot.
- Add sausage mixture to tortellini in pot. Toss over medium heat until blended.
- Add spinach.; toss gently until spinach wilts.
- Stir in 1/2 cup cheese; add more broth by 1/4 cup cupfuls to moisten if dry.
- Season with salt and pepper, sprinkle with fennel fronds and any additional cheese.
Although this recipe had a 1 star review, I really wanted to try it because all of the ingredients sound so good. I had never tried fennel before and after reading the previous review I decided to cut back on the amount of fennel in the recipe. My fennel bulb only yielded about 1 1/2 cups of slices anyhow. I also used anise seed instead of fennel seed, and I used less of it. Also, my bag of tortellini was only 12 oz and the recipe called for a 16 oz bag. Had I used a 16 oz bag, I think the ratio of tortellini to the rest of the ingredients would have been too much, so I think the 12 oz was perfect. We REALLY enjoyed this, and I think next time I would probably use the full amount of fennel. Once cooked down, it had a really nice and mild flavor, and mixed in with the sausage, mushrooms & everything else, it just had such a great taste. One issue I had was that when boiling the mixture with the cream & chicken broth- mine never did thicken up. I made a cornstarch slurry which helped, so I would probably keep doing that in the future. Only thing I would change about the recipe is to add some heat- maybe some hot Italian sausage and/or red pepper flakes. This would also taste great as a soup. Thanks for posting the recipe!
This recipe did look delicious in Bon Appetit magazine but it has way too much fennel. I really like fennel but this was just too much.