Sweet and Spicy Sausage Saute

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One thing that I’ve noticed lately is that I don’t like many of the restaurants that The Kid and I used to go to. The Kid, of course being a kid, loves going to the old standard chain restaurants. Me, being a foodie, finds most of them boring to the taste buds.

I’m not calling out any restaurant specifically because it pretty much applies to most of the chain places. We’ve been trying to branch out to more local restaurants and trying some new food types and flavor combinations that you don’t typically find. Sometimes I have to drag The Kid kicking and screaming. 😉

Last Friday we tried Korean barbecue for the first time. It was smack in the middle of Korea Town (never knew Korea Town existed before this) and most of the staff didn’t speak English at this questionable looking hole in the wall. It.was.AWEsome! The best meal I’ve had in years actually.

I had no idea what exactly we were ordering nor how to eat it, so it was truly a blind experience. The meal came with about 8 little bowls of various side dishes. The only one I recognized was kimchi. Everything else was a mystery. My favorite was the chewy strips of something beige. I even had to use chopsticks because they didn’t have forks.

I’m going to be branching out a little more when cooking at home to try some of these creations. Of course I’m going to do them Quest Style which boils down to quick, easy, flavorful, and healthy for you (for the most part). This latest recipe combines the spicy and sweet flavor combination that I really love.

It’s also got gorgeous colors and different textures in there from the sweet crispy grapes to the spicy crumbly sausage. Upon first read, this recipe seems pretty complicated but it really flowed well using these steps:

  1. Get out all the ingredients.
  2. Coarse chop the broccoli rabe. Slice the grapes into halves. Slice the onion.
  3. Set the pot of water for the rabe to boil and start sauteing the sausage.
  4. By the time the sausage and grapes are done and going in the bowl, the water should be boiling. Add the rabe to the water and start sauteing the onions.
  5. While the onions are cooking, drain the rabe and let it sit.
  6. Add the garlic and wine to the onions and saute.
  7. Dump the onions into the sausage bowl, add the drained rabe, and toss with the vinegar.
  8. Done!

Sweet and Spicy Sausage Saute Sweet and Spicy Sausage Saute

  • 4 – 5 cups (200g) broccoli rabe
  • 2 links lean Italian turkey sausage
  • 3 cups (400g) seedless green grapes
  • 1/2 cup sliced red onion
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper

Bring a pot of water to a boil and coarsely chop the broccoli rabe into pieces. While the water is coming to a boil, heat a pan over medium heat. Remove the sausage from the casings, and saute for about 5 minutes until cooked thoroughly.

Slice the grapes into halves and add them to the sausage. Saute for another 2 – 3 minutes until the grapes start to soften. Remove from heat and put in a large bowl. Drop the rabe into the boiling water and cook for about 2 minutes until wilted.

Drain the rabe well in a strainer or colander. Add the onions to the pan that you cooked the sausage in and saute for 2 – 3 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and white wine. Bring to a quick boil and saute for 2 minutes, scraping the browned bits off the bottom for flavor.

Once most of the wine has evaporated, remove from heat and add to the sausage and rabe mixture. Toss with the vinegar until well mixed and salt and pepper to taste.

Makes 4 large servings at 171 calories each – 11g protein, 22g carbs and 4g fat.

Notes

  • I used the Honeysuckle Farms lean Italian turkey sausage. These are the large sausage links that are 140 calories each. They aren’t the small breakfast sausage size.
  • If you don’t want to use wine, you can substitute chicken broth or water instead. Most of the wine burns off when cooking and you are just left with the flavor. I had leftover white wine from Healthy Chicken Parmesan and Colorful Cod Soup.
  • You can use any hearty green like collards, kale, or chard instead of the rabe. These have slightly different flavors but are pretty much interchangeable.

I used broccoli rabe (AKA rapini) in this recipe because I had an impulse purchase while at the farmer’s market. They had interesting looking bunches of it on sale so I figured I’d give it a try. It’s a pretty tough green so it works best to boil it first to tenderize it instead of trying to just saute or stir fry it.

It’s definitely Kid approved because she inhaled her dinner and then asked for more. I’d call that a success. 🙂

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