|Polenta with Sausage Stew
1/4 cup olive oil
8 Italian sausages (about 2 1/2 pounds)
1 large red onion, skin removed, cut in 1/2 and cut into slices
3 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic, skins removed, and roughly chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 cups crushed tomatoes in tomato puree
Freshly ground pepper
Polenta, recipe follows
Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the sausages and cook, piercing the sausages with a fork to release the fat. Cook until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Carefully drain off the excess fat.
Add to the cooked sausages the remaining olive oil, onion, and bay leaves. Cook over medium heat until the onions are soft and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 to 45 seconds. Add the white wine and continue cooking until reduced, about 2 more minutes. Add the tomatoes, cover, and cook, stirring often, until thick, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of water if the sauce starts to stick. Serve with polenta.
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1 cup instant polenta
Line a large shallow dish, such as a pie plate, with a tea towel. Set aside.
In a medium pot place 4 cups of water and salt. In a slow steady stream, add the cornmeal, whisking until incorporated. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook until the polenta is thick and pulls away from the sides of the pan, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Pour the polenta onto the towel-lined dish.
Yield: 4 servings