Tuscan Sausages with Grapes and Balsamic Vinegar

A popular Tuscan dish that is sweet, salty, and savory. I think we tend to be familiar with the German variation of this dish: apples, onions, and sausages. If you can, use fresh herbs for extra flavor. The grape and onion topping is absolutely delicious! This dish is perfect with rice or polenta.

Serves: 4 to 6

1 Tbsp Flying Olive Tuscan Herb, or a Mild-Medium Single Varietal Extra Virgin Olive Oil of Choice
1 1/2 pounds sweet Italian sausage: pork, chicken, or turkey (The sausages you choose should not be overly seasoned as they tend to clash with the sauce. Suggestion: Jennie-O sweet Italian sausage)
1 pound seedless red grapes, halved lengthwise (about 3 cups)
1 onion, halved and sliced thin
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano, a few extra sprigs to garnish, if desired
2 tsp Flying Olive Aged Dark Balsamic Vinegar, such as Neapolitan, 18 Year Traditional, or Denissimo
2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint:

Directions:

Heat the Flying Olive EVOO of Choice in 12-inch skillet over medium heat.  When it begins to shimmer, add the sausages, arranging them around the pan. Cook, turning once, until the sausages are browned on both sides, about 5 minutes. (If you have large sausages like I did, remove them from the skillet and carefully cut each one on the diagonal into thirds. The sausages will not be totally cooked and still may be a little soft. Return them to the pan).

Tilt the skillet and carefully blot excess fat with a piece of paper towel. Add the grapes and onion over and around the sausages. Add the water and immediately cover the pan. Cook, turning sausages once, until they register between 160 and 165 degrees, and the onions and grapes have softened, about 10 minutes.

Transfer the sausages to a paper towel-lined plate and tent with aluminum foil. Return the skillet to medium-high heat. If there is an unusual amount of liquid in the skillet, drain almost all of it off. Stir pepper and salt into the grape-onion mixture. Spread the mixture evenly in a single layer in the skillet. Cook, without stirring until it starts to brown, about 3 to 5 minutes.

When the bottom is brown, continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture is well browned throughout and the grapes are soft but still retain their shape, 3 to 5 minutes longer. Reduce the heat to medium, stir in the wine and oregano, and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until the wine is reduced by half, 30 to 60 seconds. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the Flying Olive Balsamic Vinegar of Choice.

Arrange the sausages on a platter and spoon the grape-onion mixture over the top. Sprinkle with the mint. Serve.

Inspired by a recipe from America’s Test Kitchen

Submitted by Barb L.