Italian Sausages and Peppers is a typical family style dish served in Italian homes at large family lunch. It seemed perfect for this meal.
I think of an Italian grandmother standing over the stove, putting this together. I didn’t have an Italian grandmother. But I’d like to imagine, if I did, this is what her dish would taste like.
Usually the sausages are pork and they have a fair amount of spices and heat. I use turkey sausages instead of pork. I use mild Italian sausages and add the extra heat and spice to the peppers. I don’t want people biting into a sausage that is too hot and spicy for them.
Also, I use fresh uncooked turkey sausages. I buy them at Bristol Farms Market in the meat department.
If you use fresh or raw sausages, you need to be sure to cook them thoroughly. If you’re not sure, cut one open. It should be juicy but not red or pink.
If you can’t find fresh Italian turkey sausages, you can use the type that are cooked and ready to eat directly from the package. I have found those at Costco. Reading the ingredients, you should see fennel seeds and red pepper flakes for an Italian flavor.
The secret to this recipe (don’t tell anyone) is the addition of balsamic vinegar. This gives you a bit of acid and depth of flavor that brings it all together. I don’t think my imaginary Italian grandmother did this, but she would love the flavor. If you have an Italian grandmother, try these and let me know what she thinks.
ITALIAN SAUSAGES AND PEPPERS
EVENT: DING-DONG! The Termites Are Gone!
SERVES: 6-8 People
8 links Italian flavored turkey sausages
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons dried basil
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
5 large orange, yellow or red bell peppers, cut into 1” – 1 1/2” slices
2 medium purple onions, sliced
1 tablespoon dried or fresh parsley
Salt and pepper
4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar *
1. In a large non-stick sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and brown and cook turkey sausages. For raw / fresh sausages, this will take approximately 10-12 minutes. When sausages are thoroughly cooked, remove sausages from pan and transfer to a plate.
2. In the same sauté pan, add remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil. When oil is warm, add the basil, red pepper flakes and sliced onions, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat until the onions are soft. Then add the peppers. Cook until peppers are well cooked.
3. Add the balsamic vinegar and mix everything. Continue cooking until the liquid is slightly reduced.
4. Put the sausages together with any juice drippings that may have accumulated in the plate back into the sauté pan with the onions and peppers.
5. Toss everything together. The sausages should be completely cooked.
6. Cook about 2 minutes.
7. Top with dried or fresh parsley.
8. Pile everything on a large platter with a raised edge as there will be pan juices.
*A NOTE: I buy my balsamic vinegar at Costco.