Sometimes I fall into a rut with Italian sausages and go with the usual sausage with onion and peppers. Not that there's anything wrong with that but I needed a change! And that is what led me to developing this recipe. I braised the sausages in red wine until the wine completely evaporated and started to crisp up the skin. The sausages take on the deep color of the wine and are then simmered in a spicy tomato, olive and caper sauce. Was it good? Nope ... it was mouth-watering! The Hub, had seconds and he's my "this stuff is good" barometer ... if he's having seconds I know it's a home run.
1 pound Italian sausage
1 cup red wine
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced or pressed through a press
1/4 cup of drained non-pareil capers, roughly chopped
1/2 cup of drained kalamata olives, pitted and roughly chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 pounds of roma tomatoes, diced or 1- 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes, including juice
1 teaspoon fresh or 1/2 dried thyme
I bay leaf
2 pinches of sugar
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes or to taste (If you don't like heat just leave it out)
1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound linguine or pasta of choice
In a deep skillet add the wine and bring to a boil over medium heat. Add the sausage links, cook until the wine evaporates (about 7 - 9 minutes) and sausage casing begins to crisp up and brown. Set aside.
Heat skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and onions and cook for 5-7 minutes. Add garlic, capers and olives, cook for an additional 3-6 minutes or until fragrant. Add the remaining ingredients including the sausage. Bring up to a low boil and reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
Prepare pasta according to package instructions.
Serve over pasta of choice, I prefer linguine, french bread and a glass of red wine or beer. ENJOY!