Rice, wild rice with fennel, red peppers and sausage 1 (2) Rice, wild rice with fennel, red peppers and sausage 2

3 cups low-sodium chicken broth

3 cups water

1-1/4 cups wild rice, rinsed under cold water and drained well

1 teaspoon salt

8 ounces sweet Italian sausage, casings removed

3 tablespoons olive oil

one 12-ounce fennel bulb, trimmed and diced

1 large red bell pepper, diced

¼ teaspoon chopped fennel seeds

2 large leeks (white and pale green parts only), chopped

3 large garlic cloves, minced

1. Bring the broth and water to boil in a medium saucepan, add the rice and salt, reduce the heart to medium, and simmer until rice is almost tender, about 45 minutes. Drain. (Rice can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

2. Heat a large, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Fry sausage until cooked through, breaking up sausage with a fork, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to a bowl.

3. Add 2 tablespoons oil to the same saucepan. Add the fennel, bell pepper and fennel seeds and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer with slotted spoon to the bowl with the sausage. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in same saucepan, add leeks and garlic and sauté until tender and golden, about 8 minutes. Add rice, stir 1 minute and season with pepper. Stir in the sausage and vegetables from the bowl, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until any liquid is absorbed and rice is tender and hot, 5 to 10 minutes (if pan is dry when the sausage and vegetables are added, toss in half a cup of water and simmer until it is absorbed.)

adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine, March, 1992

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