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Sausages and grapes go together like prosciutto and figs. The sauce gets a boost from balsamic vinegar. To complete the meal, serve over mashed potatoes. This is so simple to make and oh so good.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 pounds hot Italian sausage, cut into 3-inch lengths (see Note)
  • 1-1/2 pounds sweet Italian sausage, cut into 3-inch lengths
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2-1/2 pounds red or green seedless grapes, stemmed (6 to 7 cups)
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Prick the sausages with the tip of a knife or a metal skewer and add them to the boiling water. Boil the sausages gently for 8 minutes, then drain them and set aside.

Melt the butter in a large roasting pan over low heat. Add the grapes to the pan and toss to coat them with the butter. With tongs transfer the parboiled sausages to the pan and push them down into the grapes so that the sausages will not brown too quickly.

Roast the sausages and grapes in the preheated oven, turning the sausages once, until the grapes are soft and the sausages have browned, 20 to 25 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the sausages and grapes to a heated serving platter.

Place the roasting pan on top of the stove over a medium-high flame and add the balsamic vinegar. Stir to scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan and cook the vinegar and juices until they are thick and syrupy.

Pour the sauce over the sausages and grapes and serve immediately, accompanied with mashed potatoes.

Note: Use more sweet sausages and fewer hot ones for a milder dish, but do use Italian sausages, as their fennel and garlic flavors are essential to this dish.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Recipe Source: Great Chefs of the East by Ellen Brown (Great Chefs Publishing)
Reprinted with permission.

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