For many people, cooking sausages connects them with primal parts of their being. Some want their sausages well done because cavemen invented fire 5000 years agoand that’s why you cook the sausages so well. While there are those who seek perfection on earth and imagine their grilled sausage is part of that quest. Maybe it’s a spectrum thing, a range of tastes that in many cases have no overlapping common elements – like a red state Trumpite talking to a Seattle blue stater about politics. There may be agreement on oxygen being necessary to breathe but after that the particular variables are marbles rolling around crashing into each other.
But, even in quandaries of conflicting deeply held values there can be some knowledge gained for both parties and all the community members. In the following article from Serious Eats, J. Kenji Lopez-Alt does a wonderful job bringing some demonstrable evidence and data about what can happen when you cook sausages. As I read the article I could hear my inner caveman sneer at some of his suggestions. But, he offers options and good ideas and that’s a constructive piece of writing that any red state or blue state person could agree on.
J. Kenji López-Alt is the managing culinary director for Serious Eats:
- 1 Roll Pizza crust Thin crust works well; thick crust holds more poundage better.
- 1 to 1.5 Pounds Italian beef with au jus
- 1 to 1.5 Pounds Italian sausage Get the bulk ground sausage; hot or sweet your choice
- 1 Pound Shredded cheese (Mozzarella) I would suggest the skim milk kind but who am I kidding – use what you like
- Giardiniera Go hot – it’s wintertime. If you’re weak and morally questionable, mild will do.
- Cook the Beef (save the au jus for dipping)
- Cook the Sausage (If links slice them to 1/8” thick pieces, if ground keep it broke up as small as possible – makes it easier to roll)
- Roll out the pizza crust on a non-stick pan ( spray down an oversized sheet of aluminum foil with spray oil. This makes it easier to roll without having the sides of the pan in the way. Fold up the sides of the foil to “make” a pan to keep any juices from running out and into the oven)
- Add a layer of cheese (about half of the cheese) on the crust (try to keep all layers of cheese and meat about ½” to 1” from all edges of the crust so you have room to roll & “seal” without stuff falling out. )
- Add a layer of beef (all of it)
- Add a layer of sausage (all of it)
- Add giardiniera (and/or pepperoncini, banana peppers, jalapenos, habaneros are all welcome to join)
- Add a second layer of cheese
- Roll the crust like you would roll up a tarpaulin. It’s going to be a large rolled football size thing. Keep it as tightly as you can without ripping it. Cooking tip: If you have sturdy foil you can use it like one of the “cigarette rolling machines” to pull an even wrap. Make sure to end with the tag end/seam on the bottom and then fold the two ends underneath.
- Poke a few fork holes in the top so you don’t have a blow out. Cook the football for however long the crust instructions call for (usually 15-17 minutes) or until the crust is golden brown on top.
- You can give the top a nice egg wash to give it a pretzel bread look. If the game is at hand or this seems to effete, never mind this add-on step.
- Let it cool for a few minutes before cutting (slices hold together much better if they are 1-1/2” to 2” wide and don’t cut them in half lengthwise (you lose the pinwheel effect).
- Grab a slice, dip it in the au jus that you saved, drink your favorite beverage. If you have any left over spaghetti sauce, you can use that as your dip as well.
- Additional Suggestions: You can also add chopped onions, mushrooms, olives and green peppers to the filling. It’s in concept a pizza with the crust on the outside.
Thanks to Dave M. of Wilmette, Ill for this great recipe.
- 1 pack Botto's Sweet or Hot Italian Sausage If you can’t use Botto’s sausage, substitute in your local favorite Italian sausage.
- 3 Large Mushrooms, sliced
- 1/4 cup Sliced Pepperoncini
- 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Roma Plum Tomato
- 1/4 cup Diced Onion
- 2 tablespoons Diced Garlic
- 1/2 cup Dry White Wine
- 1 tablespoon Diced Parsley Fresh
- 6 Basil Leaves Diced Fresh
- 2 tablespoons Grated Romano Cheese
- Salt and Pepper Salt and pepper to taste.
- First, make a decision on going with sweet or hot Italian sausage. Once you do that, place the Italian sausage and bake in oven until fully cooked. Cook at 350 for 30 minutes or so – check to make sure you get the doneness level you want. Some people like sausage more crispy, some like less done – just make sure its fully cooked. Let sauté and flavors blend.
- In a large sauté pan heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and add sliced garlic, diced onion, sliced mushroom, pepperoncini and diced plum tomatoes.
- Cut the sausage in half inch slices and add to sauté Pan.
- Season with salt and pepper, fresh basil and parsley to taste and a tablespoon of grated Romano cheese.
- When everything is sautéed evenly add a half cup of white wine and reduce half way and serve.
Thanks to Enrico Botto, the Chef/Owner of CW Brown for suggesting this hearty warming dish for November.
By the way, we tried this recipe at home and found a few red pepper chili flakes added a little more warmth. You might like to add that in for a bit more warmth.
|Prep Time||20 minutes|
|Cook Time||1 hour|
- 2 Eggplants Cut into thin rounds
- 6 Tomatoes Cut into thin rounds
- 4 Zuchinni Cut into thin rounds
- 3 Sweet Yellow Onions Cut into thin rounds
- 6 Fresh Thyme Sprigs Leaves only
- 4 Bay Leaves
- 6 Garlic Cloves Coarsely chopped
- 3/4 cup Dry White Wine
- 1/2 cup olive oil Scant 1/2 cup
- 4 & 1/2 teaspoons Sweet Butter
- 6 links Fresh Chorizo Sausages from LOCAL
- Sea Salt
- Preheat oven to 325 F.
- Place all the vegetable rounds vertically, in layers, in a dutch oven.
- Add the thyme leaves, bay leaves, garlic, white wine, olive oil and butter.
- Prick the sausages and arrange them on top.
- Cover & bake in the oven for 1 hour, until the vegetables are very tender.
- Season with sea salt & serve.