Sausages with polenta and braised courgettes
- June 2021
- Serves 4
- Hands-on time 30 min
Slow-cook Italian sausages, then serve with tender braised courgettes and creamy polenta for a flavour-packed dinner for four.
Loved this dish? Next time, try our Italian sausage and porcini mushroom casserole.
- 40.9g (15.8g saturated)
- 44g (4.6g sugars)
- 2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for the sausages, if needed
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- ½ tsp chilli flakes
- 500g courgettes, roughly chopped
- 100ml white wine
- 8 Italian sausages (see Know-how)
For the pesto drizzle
- 1 tbsp pine nuts, toasted
- 125g basil leaves
- 1 small garlic clove
- 25g parmesan, grated
- 200ml olive oil
For the polenta
- 200g quick-cook polenta
- 50g butter
- ½ lemon for squeezing
Useful to have
- Food processor
- Heat the oil in a large sauté pan (one with a lid) over a low-medium heat, then fry the onion and a pinch of salt for 20 minutes until softened and starting to caramelise (add a splash of water if it starts to look dry).
- Add the garlic, chilli and courgettes, turn up the temperature a couple of notches and fry for 5 minutes more, stirring regularly, until the courgettes start to take on colour. Add the wine and simmer for a minute or so, then add 100ml water. Bring to a simmer, then turn down the heat, cover, and cook gently for an hour. You want the courgettes falling apart and pleasantly gunge-coloured.
- Meanwhile, cook the sausages in a cast iron or non-stick frying pan. Gently. Tenderly. For an hour, turning halfway through. Add a little oil if you need to get them started.
- Make the pesto by blending the toasted pine nuts with the basil, garlic, parmesan and, a little at a time, the olive oil. Do this in a machine or by hand in a large pestle and mortar. This makes a slightly looser mixture than your classic pesto, as it’s for spooning over the sausages.
- When the sausages and courgettes are cooked and keeping warm, cook the polenta according to the packet instructions, then beat in the butter and plenty of pepper. Serve with the sausages, braised courgettes, pesto and a squeeze of lemon juice for good measure.
Don’t waste it: Leftover pesto will keep, stored in an airtight container in the fridge, for 2-3 days. Stir into soups or pasta, drizzle over grilled meat, or mix with shredded chicken for an easy sandwich filler.
Halve to serve two: Halve the ingredients and cook the recipe in a smaller pan so nothing dries out too much.
Italian sausages have a high meat content and are slightly coarser in texture than British varieties. Find them in larger supermarkets, Italian delis and butchers. If you can’t get a hold of them, use a good quality, fat British sausage with a high meat content.
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