Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Italian Sausage with Red Grapes

This is the last of the sausage recipes I have to give you. As you know, I truly love good sausage and I find them one of the quickest ways to get a delicious meal on the table. This recipe is no exception. The polenta will take you a bit of time but a nice loaf of bread would work just as well. A salad or the spinach suggested below and you're done.

1 medium onion, sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound Italian sausage (about 4-5 sausages)
Note: I buy Caggiano Sweet Italian in Sonoma; buy fresh good quality Italian sausage, usually with fennel seed, where ever you are.
1 pound seedless red grapes, stemmed
Note: You can also use 1 cup Oven-Roasted Grapes (August 13, 2009 blog).
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary or thyme
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a heavy 10-inch skillet, add the onions, and cook until they are soft and amber. Remove from the pan and set aside.
2. Heat remaining olive oil in the same skillet over moderate heat until hot. Brown the sausages on all sides, poking them with a fork each time you turn them. This will take about 8 minutes.
3. Add ½ cup water to the pan, cover and turn the heat to low. Simmer the sausages until they are cooked through, about 10 minutes, turning once. Remove all but ¼ cup of the remaining liquid.
4. Add grapes and cook, stirring occasionally, until grapes are softened, 5 minutes or so. If using Oven-Roasted Grapes, you only need to cook them for a few minutes to warm them up.
5. Remove the sausages from the pan. Add the reserved onions, half of the rosemary or thyme, and the vinegar to the grapes and stir to mix everything together. Taste for salt and pepper and add as you see fit.
6. Cut the sausages in half and return to the pan. Heat briefly until everything is nicely hot. Sprinkle with remaining rosemary or thyme.

4 servings
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, October 2005

I often serve this with Creamy Polenta (June 11, 2010 blog) to which you can add the liquid in which the sausages have cooked and Spinach (May 31, 2010 blog).

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