I had a bunch of Kale that I needed to use. Plus I got a good deal on some beautiful Chicken Smoked Sausage...so I decided to put them together in a nice cheesy casserole!
1 lb pasta of your choice, cooked according to package directions
1 rope of smoked sausage , cut into bite sized pieces
(oz will vary depending on what brand you get.....chicken, turkey, beef, whatever you like!)
1 large bunch Kale, veins and stems removed and chopped into bite sized pieces
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 TB butter
1/4 cup flour (or 2 TB corn or potato starch for GF)
1 1/2 cups milk
8 oz Smoked Swiss* cheese, shredded, divided
1 tsp smoked paprika
salt and pepper to taste
*If you don't like Swiss, use smoked mozzarella, if you cant find smoked cheese, add 1/2 tsp liquid smoke!
Cook and drain your pasta
While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil over medium heat in a large pan. Add onion and garlic, cook until fragrant.
Add sliced sausage and continue cooking until it is gently browned.
Finally add chopped kale and toss and cook until it is wilted well.
Heat butter over medium heat, stir in flour(or if using starch, whisk it right into the milk) , then add milk, cook and stir until it is well thickened... Add 6 oz of the cheese and stir until melted. Add paprika and salt and pepper.
In a large casserole dish combine drained pasta, the sausage/kale mix and the cheese sauce, stir gently until well combined.
I topped mine with some leftover Onion rings, you can use french fried onions, or any other crunchy topping you like!
Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes, remove foil and cook another 15 until heated through. Add the remaining 2 oz of cheese in the last 5 minutes.