Sausages and Polenta

Just barely tweaked this recipe from a couple of years back that was originally developed by food writer/editor/creator extraordinaire, Renee Schettler, for a magazine I was editing at the time. The grapes in this one-dish dinner roast to a mellow mushy jam-ish delight. And they take on a happy sweet-tang after getting  a finishing drizzle of balsamic glaze. Of course, you can skip the glaze and just splash with 1 or 2 tablespoons of balsamaic vinegar…or nothing. Trader Joe’s has a pretty good balsamic glaze, too.

Yes, the recipe calls for purchased polenta. (Of course you can make your own. I used Melissa’s Organic tube o’ polenta. Kinda good, especially when the sausage juices melt into it. It’s got onions and rosemary too. That’s it. Pop it in the oven and do a good deed for your neighbor while it’s sizzling. Or pour a glass of red wine and sink into another chapter of “50 Shades of Gray.”

What’s your favorite fall comfort food … or book to snuggle up with?

13×9 one-dish dinner!


Sausages, Polenta and Grapes

4-6 smoked chicken sausage links, about 1 1/2 lb. total (I’m partial to Aidell’s. I usually use their Artichoke and Garlic version here.)

1 1/2 pounds seedless red grapes

1 tube (1 lb.) refrigerated cooked polenta, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 large red onion, cut into thin wedges

2-3 Tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp. snipped fresh rosemary

Freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon honey (or maple syrup)

1. Preheat oven to 350. Poke each sausage in several places with a fork. Or maybe a knitting needle. Add sausages to a 13×9 pan. Then pile in the grapes, polenta, onion, oil, rosemary and several cranks of black pepper. Toss ’em around.

2. Bake, uncovered, for 50 to 60 minutes or until sausages are cooked through and grapes start to collapse and look slightly shriveled. (I probably could have roasted mine a tad longer.)

3. Meanwhile, put balsamic vinegar and honey in a small saucepan; bring  to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer until slightly thick, about 8 to 10 minutes. (I like to quadruple this recipe and drizzle it on everything (try it on a beet salad or roasted vegetables!) When sausage is finished, drizzle a couple of tablespoons balsamic glaze over everything; toss to coat. Makes 4 servings.

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