You can use different colored bell peppers, or just stick with one color. This recipe uses a combination of sweet and hot sausages, but if you want a milder dish, use only the sweet sausages and reduce the amount of chili pepper flakes in the recipe. Likewise, if you would like it spicier, use hot sausages and/or bump up the amount of chili pepper flakes.
- 4 Italian sausage links (sweet, hot, or a couple of each)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 green bell pepper, sliced into 2 to 3 inch-long strips
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced into 2 to 3 inch-long strips
- 1 bell pepper of another color (yellow or orange or purple), sliced into strips 2-3 inches long
- 4 garlic cloves, sliced into slivers
- 1 large sweet or yellow onion, sliced into 1/4-inch half-moons
- 1 small (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1/2 cup Marsala or red wine (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- Salt to taste
1 Brown the sausages: Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pan that has a lid. When the oil is hot, add the sausages and brown them slowly.
If they sizzle and crackle too much, turn the heat down. You want a gentle browning, not a sear. Cook for several minutes, turning them occasionally so they brown on all sides. When the sausages are browned, remove from the pan and set aside.
2 Sauté the onions, peppers, and garlic: Increase the heat to high and add the onions and peppers. Toss so they get coated with the oil in the pan and sear them as well as you can, stirring every so often.
Once the onions and peppers soften, sprinkle some salt on them. Once you get some blackening from a good sear on the onions and peppers, add the garlic, and cook for one more minute.
3 Deglaze pan with wine (optional): Add the Marsala or red wine if you are using. Scrape the bottom of the pan with a metal spatula or wooden spoon to release all the browned and blackened bits. Let the wine cook down by half.
4 Simmer all the ingredients: Add the tomatoes, oregano, and red pepper flakes (if using) and stir well to combine. Add the sausages back in. Bring to a simmer. then reduce the heat to low.
Cover and simmer until the peppers are soft and the sausages are cooked through, about 20 minutes.
5 Serve: Serve over polenta, penne pasta, or load it up on a hoagie roll. Sausage and peppers and onions will keep for several days in the fridge.