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Sausage Casserole

Sausage, Potato and Cipolline Casserole -- a hearty dish for a chilly evening

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Sausage, Potato and Cipolline Casserole -- a hearty dish for a chilly evening

farmersdaughter | Feb 21, 2006 09:42 AM

For about a week here in SF we had spring but it's cooled back down to winter temperatures again, so I've put aside thoughts of green garlic and asparagus momentarily for a few remaining winter dishes. Last night I made a recipe from Joyce Goldstein's "Italian Slow and Savory" which was perfect for a simple meal on a cold night. There is very little prep, just an hour of cooking time for this one-dish meal. Here is the recipe with my slight revisions.

--1 1/2 lbs hot or mild fresh pork sausage, casings removed and meat broken up into small pieces (I used a mix of hot and mild)
--1 lb russet potatoes, peeld and sliced 1/4"thick (I used a potato from my famer's market potato purveyor similar to a yukon gold, because I wanted them to hold together rather than turn to mush as russets tend to do, although in Puglia, where the recipe comes from, they would use russets)
--3/4 lb cipollini onions, parboiled for 8 minutes, drained, peeled (the cipollini onions in my local co-cop didn't look too good and there were none at the farmers market, so I used thinly sliced red onions and didn't parboil them; spring onions would also work well)
--5 or 6 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and cut into strips (fresh or canned -- I used a 28 oz can of Muir Glen tomatoes, drained and sliced--save the tomato juice)
--2 cloves garlic, minced
--1/4 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
--3/4 cup pecorino cheese (don't use pecorino romano, which is too dry and salty for this dish; a younger pecorino with some moisture is better)
--1/4 cup water (or drained tomato juice)

Heat oven to 350 and grease a 2 quart shallow baking dish or cazuela. Combine sausage, potatoes, onions, tomatoes, garlic, parsley and 1/3 cup cheese in prepared dish and mix well. Drizzle with the water or tomato juice and season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake until potatoes are tender, sausage is cooked through and cheese is golden, about 30 minutes longer. Serves 4.

I served it with sauteed bitter greens with a little of my homemade preserved lemon chopped up and added during the saute. It was a very nice meal.

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