Sunday Brunch: Italian Sausage Ragu over Parmesan Polenta

Posted at 9:29 AM, Nov 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 11:34:07-05

Follow along with Chef Jeff as he teaches you how to make a savory Italian Sausage Ragu over Parmesan Polenta.

Smith’s Chef Jeff Jackson Recipe

Italian Sausage Ragu over Parmesan Polenta

For the Ragu: For the Polenta:
1 lb. Italian sausage 4 c. chicken broth
2 tbsp. olive oil 1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. garlic, minced 1 c. dry polenta or corn grits
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes 1 c. heavy cream
2 tbsp. tomato paste 1 c. grated parmesan cheese
½ c. dry red wine (optional) 2 tsp. salt
½ tsp. sugar ½ tsp. pepper
½ tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp. salt or to taste
½ tsp. pepper or to taste
6-8 fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
Chopped parsley and extra parmesan for garnish

1. In a large skillet over med-high heat, add the 2 tbsp. olive oil and the sausage. Break up the sausage and cook until browned. Add the garlic and cook 1 more minute.

2. Lower the heat to med-low and add the red wine if using. Cook 3-4 minutes to reduce. Add the sugar, oregano, salt and pepper and cook a couple more minutes.

3. Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Cook for 20-25 minutes.

4. As the sauce simmers, make the polenta by bringing the broth, olive oil, salt and pepper to a boil. Slowly whisk in the polenta or grits to avoid lumps. Turn the temperature to low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring often.

5. Stir in the heavy cream and grated parmesan cheese. Simmer another 10 minutes, stirring often. Add a little water or more broth if it gets too thick. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.

6. Add the chopped basil to the sausage ragu and season if necessary.

7. Place some of the polenta in an individual serving bowl. Top with some of the sausage ragu and then garnish with a little parsley and more parmesan. Enjoy!