SAUSAGES WITH TOMATO-OLIVE RAGOUT AND POLENTA

 

“And men sit down to that nourishment which is called supper.”  (William Shakespeare)

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When it is a rainy January night and you live half way up a mountain one craves warming, simple comfort food.  Our nephew Brett and his wife Fiona were entertaining us.  What a delight to walk into  to their new home and smell the rich aroma of dinner cooking.    Perfectly grilled lamb sausages serve on mashed potatoes with a fresh tomato sauce.

This  slightly different recipe  is composed of several parts.  Each quite simple, but the sum total of their parts is an outstanding dish perfect for a family supper or casual entertaining.  You can vary the recipe by your choice of sausages.

Polenta is a staple of northern Italy and  its hearty character is best accented by the robust flavours of the savory ragout.   SAUSAGES WITH TOMATO-OLIVE RAGOUT AND POLENTA  is indeed nourishment which is called supper.

ingredients:

6 cups peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes or 2 cans (28 oz/796 ml) peeled Tomatoes from Italy

2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil

1 small red Spanish onion, peeled and left whole

4 fat cloves garlic paper removed and left whole

salt and freshly ground pepper

2 lb (l kg) Italian pork sausages preferably flavoured with fennel seeds or your favourite pork, veal or lamb sausage

8 1/2 cups water

2 cups polenta

2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary

3 tbs unsalted butter

3/4 cup pitted brine-cured black olives such as Kalamata or Niçoise

wedge of parmesan cheese for shaving

1 1/2 tbs coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley

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In a heavy soup pot over low heat splash  olive oil into the pan.  Add the garlic and slowly let the garlic brown on all sides and flavours the olive oil.   Add the onion and let brown for a few minutes more.

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Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered until the sauce thickens., 45-60 minutes. If you have used whole peeled tomatoes break the tomatoes into pieces with a wooden spoon.  Remove from the heat and discard the onion.  Pass the mixture through the fine disk of a food mill.  Alternatively, purée in a food processor fitted with the metal blade, then pass through a fine-mesh sieve.  Season with salt and pepper.  Set aside in a saucepan.

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Meanwhile, prick the sausages with a fork.  In a large saucepan, bring 1/2 cup of the water to a boil.  Add the sausages and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until golden on all sides, and half-cooked, (10-12 minutes).  Drain and when cool enough to handle, cut each sausage on the diagonal into 2-inch pieces.

 

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In a large, heavy saucepan, bring 8 cups of water to a boil over high heat.    Slowly add the polenta in a steady stream while whisking constantly.  Continue to whisk until the mixture thickens, 3-4 minutes.  Switch to a wooden spoon, and continue to simmer, stirring until the polenta pulls away from the sides of the pan, 20-25 minutes.  Stir in the rosemary and butter.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

 

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Now place the puréed sauce over medium heat and bring to a simmer.  Add the sausage pieces and the olives and simmer, uncovered, until the sausages are cooked through, about 10 minutes.

 

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Divide the polenta equally among warmed individual plates.  Spoon the sauce and sausages around the edges.  Using a cheese shaver or a vegetable peeler,  generously shave pieces of Parmesan cheese over each serving.  Garnish with the parsley and a few sprigs of rosemary and serve immediately.  Serves Six.

SAUSAGES WITH TOMATO-OLIVE RAGOUT AND POLENTA
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: Main
Cuisine: Italian
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: 6
an easy to prepare supper dish
Ingredients
  • 6 cups peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes or 2 28 fl oz (796 ml) peeled whole tomatoes broken into pieces
  • 2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small red Spanish onion, peeled and left whole
  • 4 cloves garlic, paper removed and left whole
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 lb (l kg) Italian pork sausages, preferably flavored with fennel seeds, or any other favorite type of pork, veal or lamb sausage
  • 8½ cups water
  • 2 cups polenta
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
  • 3 tbs unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup pitted brine-cured black olives such as Kalamata or Nicoise
  • wedge of Parmesan cheese for shaving
  • 1½ tbs coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian Parsley
Instructions
  1. In a heavy soup pot over medium heat add the oil and the garlic and brown the garlic slowly - about 15 minutes.
  2. Add onion and saute briefly.
  3. Add tomatoes and increase to high and bring to a boil . Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered until the sauce thickens, 45-60 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and discard the onion.
  5. Pass the mixture through the fine disc of a food mill. Alternatively puree in a food processor, then pass through a fine-mesh sieve.
  6. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Meanwhile, prick the sausages and place in a large saute pan and add ½ cup water.
  8. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium and saute until golden on all sides and half-cooked, 10-12 minutes.
  9. Drain and when cool enough to handle cut each sausage on the diagonal into 2- inch pieces.
  10. In a large, heavy saucepan bring the remaining 8 cups water to a boil over high heat. Slowly add the polenta in a steady stream while whisking constantly.
  11. Continue to whisk until the mixture thickens, 3-4 minutes.
  12. Switch to a wooden spoon, reduce the heat to medium and continue to simmer, stirring, until the polenta pulls away from the sides of the pan, 20-25 minutes.
  13. Stir in the rosemary and butter.
  14. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  15. Meanwhile, place the pureed sauce over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Add the sausage pieces and the olives and simmer, uncovered, until the sausages are cooked through, about 10 minutes.
  16. Divide the polenta equally among warmed individual plates.
  17. Spoon the sauce and sausages around the edges.
  18. Using a cheese shaver or a vegetable peeler shave a generous amount of the Parmesan cheese over each serving.
  19. Garnish with the parsley and serve immediately.

 

 

 

 

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3 Responses to SAUSAGES WITH TOMATO-OLIVE RAGOUT AND POLENTA

  1. Pingback: POLENTA WITH SAUSAGES AND TOMATO-OLIVE RAGOUT « Bel' Occhio's Blog

  2. The Tin Man says:

    Marvelous – Marvelous – Marvelous !!!

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