This is Mario’s take on “the Little Italy classic.”

2 pounds sweet Italian sausage, pricked all over with a fork

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

2 red bell peppers, cut into 1 inch dice

2 green bell peppers, cut into 1 inch dice

2 yellow bell peppers, cut into 1 inch dice

1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

1 small fennel bulb, trimmed, cored and thinly sliced

4 serrano chiles, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise

1 habanero chile, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise


1 cup dry red wine

1 cup freshly grated pecorino cheese (3 ounces)

crusty bread for serving


  • Light a grill.  Brush the sausages lightly with oil and grill over a medium-hot fire, turning,  until nicely charred and just cooked  through, about 16 minutes.  (If you want to cook the sausages indoors , put in ¼ cup of water into a large cast iron skillet with the sausages and turn the heat to medium-high.  Prick the sausages in several places with a fork.  When the water evaporates, allow the sausages to brown thoroughly on one side, then add another ¼ cup of water.  When this evaporates, brown the sausages on the other side.)
  1. Set a large cast iron skillet on the grill and add 3 tablespoons olive oil. Add the peppers, onion, fennel and chiles to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are softened, about 15 minutes.  Season with salt.  Add the sausages and wine to the skillet and cook until the wine has reduced by half, about 4 minutes.  Remove from the grill and sprinkle half of the pecorino cheese over the sausages and peppers.  Serve with bread, passing the remaining pecorino at the table.

from Mario Batali,  printed in Food and Wine Magazine,  September, 2006


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