Friday, June 26, 2009
Sausages and vegetables from Anerio Cincotta
In a large preheated frying pan pour:
1/4 cup of olive oil
Heat till you can just start smelling the oil and the surface seems to shimmer.
3 or 4 Sausages of your choice cut in 1/4" or 1/2" pieces. You can't beat Dom's in Malden as that is where many of our family settled, but a local establishment could supply you garlic and cheese, hot or sweet sausages. If you go to Malfa, the butcher there makes a great sausage with minced tomato and bitter herbs like Arugula or Dandelion greens. They are simple and heavenly. (Note from Bill: I usually remove the sausage casings when I do this as the shreds of casing make for an odd texture in finished dishes.)
Brown the sausage and drain off at least some of the fat. You can easily push the sausage to the side and tilt the pan where you can absorb some of the fat with a paper towel. Try not to remove the lean juices.
Add at medium heat:
2 medium size onions cut up. (White are traditional in Italy, but Red makes a milder and sweeter dish that is also common in Italy. Though not as common in Italy, yellow onions are fine.)
2-3 peppers green, red or yellow cut up
2 table spoons of minced garlic (Howards)
2 bunches of broccoli or cauliflower or both broken or cut into florets.
Broccoli Rape would also be great in this.
Mix all together and brown slightly and add:
1 cup tomato sauce
reduce the heat to low and simmer covered till the vegetables are cooked to the desired tenderness. The vegetables and meat will exude more juices to make a sauce along with the tomato.
Salt and pepper to taste.
Oregano if desired.
When I see variations of this in Italy, I am often disappointed. They tend to over cook the Broccoli, Cauliflower and any number of other vegetables in Italy. Keep tasting this till your veggies are just a bit underdone. It will continue to cook after the heat is turned off. Be especially careful with Broccoli Rape as it can be quite bitter when overcooked.
Serve with any starch and grated cheese
Perhaps you could add a few red pepper flakes if you and your guests can take it.
You could also do this with a cut up frying chicken, chicken breast or thighs(whole or boneless). Mixed with cooked Penne or Ziti, this would be a wonderful buffet or Pot Luck dish.
Split open crusty rolls, whole Italian or French loaves and brush the cut sides with olive oil. Toast under the broiler briefly then pile a layer of this dish onto each side. Grate a nice mild melting cheese like Buffalo Mozzarella or Fontina over the mounds of veggies. Bake just till the cheese melts then fold them over to assemble the sandwiches and cut into slices or half rolls to serve. This will make a lot of sandwiches for a picnic tailgate party or a last minute, what the devil do I serve this crowd, party.