Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Roasted Italian Sausage, Potatoes and Peppers

I made this a few days ago and took leftovers to work, where my co-workers inhaled it. It's one of those things that is better the second day. It's also actually very easy, especially if you use pre-chopped frozen onions and peppers and jarred garlic as short cuts. If you don't like pork or want a lower-fat version, try a turkey or chicken sausage instead.

1 pound mild Italian sausage
1 large sweet onion or 1 cup frozen chopped
1 large red bell pepper or 1 cup frozen chopped
4 potatoes – medium to large sized – I used 2 red and 2 white
Olive oil
1 bulb garlic (that’s the whole head) or about 8 cloves jarred or 2 tablespoons pre-chopped

Preheat oven to 425.

Peel skin from sausages and cut into chunks. Toss lightly with olive oil or cooking spray.

Peel and chop onion. Chop pepper. Peel and chop garlic. Large pieces are fine for all of that! Put together in a bowl and pour over about ¼ cup olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt, pepper, oregano, parsley and paprika. Mix well and let sit.

Scrub potatoes and chop each into 6 or 8 pieces depending on size. Put in a glass bowl and cover with cold water; add 1 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt. Microwave 20 minutes on high to partially cook.

While potatoes microwave, cook only sausage in oven. Shake the pan to turn pieces every few minutes so they brown evenly. When sausage is browned (it will not be cooked all the way), take pan out of oven. Add onions, peppers and garlic to pan.

Drain par-cooked potatoes, and drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season like the peppers and onions. Add a little cayenne pepper for spicier flavor if desired. (By a little, I mean shake the container 2 or 3 times and stop!) Mix well to coat the potatoes with oil. Add potatoes to sausage and veggies. Using a large pancake turner, mix well (but gently!).

Bake at 425 for about 40 minutes. Stir well after 20 minutes. When done, sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and let stand 5 minutes before serving. Great with a salad and a medium-bodied red wine like Pinot Noir.

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