Serious Eats: Recipes
Dinner Tonight: Pepper and Sausage Ragu with Polenta
Molto Mario really was a great show. What's not to like about a younger Mario Batali flying around the kitchen saying intelligent and exuberant things about how great Italian food could be? The episodes recently appeared on Hulu.com to stream for free (in the U.S., at least), and I've been devouring them one by one. Batali's signature high-heat, controlled-chaos approach to the kitchen is invigorating.
I pulled this recipe from one episode in which he manages to grind, season, and stuff a pile of pork sausages while also cooking a delicious pepper ragu in half an hour. I made it a little easier on myself, not to mention you, by purchasing some good-quality sausages and using them instead (if you can find the ones with the diameter of a hot dog, made with sheep casings, even better). The ragu is a rich, concentrated sauce made of peppers, red onion, and tomato paste that's caramelized in the pan to create maximum flavor. For the quickness of this recipe, it's hard to beat how flavorful it really is. I served it over polenta to catch all the delicious juices.