Linguine in Sambuca Sauce with Meatballs



Ready In:

45 minutes

Good For:



  • 6 fancy sausages (I use pork fennel sausages, but you can use whatever you like!)
  • 1 lb linguine
  • 1 c cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 onion, cubed
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ c Sambuca
  • 1 tsp chili flakes
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 10 cracks fresh black pepper
  • Fresh grated parmesan to garnish

Mmmm, Sambuca!

This pasta is coated in a luscious Sambuca sauce and it is light and divine! You can cook off some of the alcohol, but a bit will remain – that said, you are not likely to feel the effects of it. We’re not doing shots here – just adding flavor.

If you are not fond of cooking with alcohol, you can always substitute a teaspoon or two of Anise extract from your baking cupboard along with a little butter.

If you choose to go this route, no need to burn off any alcohol (step 3) simply skip down and add the Anise extract along with the tomatoes.

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

Put a large pot of salted water on for the pasta.

Remove the sausages from their casings and roll the sausage meat into balls (you should get 4 meatballs per sausage). Place a splash of olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat and place the meatballs into the skillet. Brown them well on all sides until they are cooked through (10 to 15 minutes). When the meatballs are cooked through remove them to a plate and keep them warm in the oven.

Step 2

Pour the excess fat from the skillet and add the onions to the pan. Sauté over medium high heat until they begin to caramelize then push the onions to the outside of the pan, add the olive oil and garlic and sauté the garlic for a few minutes. Turn down the heat to low and add the chili flakes and give everything a good stir to combine.

Step 3

Cook pasta to al dente as per package instructions. When pasta is almost done, bring up the heat on the onions and garlic, put the meatballs back into the pan, and add the Sambuca when the pan is good and hot. Keep it good and hot to burn off a little alcohol. Once you have evaporated some of the alcohol (5 minutes or so), turn the heat to low and add the tomatoes.

Step 4

When the pasta is done, drain it well and put it back into the pot. Scoop the contents of the skillet over the pasta and toss well with tongs then serve over 4 plates, garnish with a smattering of Parmesan cheese and enjoy this slightly sweet and mildly spicy masterpiece that you have created for dinner!

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