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Help me make some killer sausage and peppers, please?

I'm from and live in Philly. A dish (I think) as popular as cheesteaks, roast pork and soft pretzels is sausage and peppers, slices of Italian sausage with red and green peppers and onion fried up in olive oil. I'm curious whether any one makes this kind of dish and the spices they use?

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  1. I make a dish of sausages and peppers with onions stir fried. No seasonings, beyond whatever seeps out of the italian sausage. I use a spicy italian sausage, and poach it lightly so it will hold together when I cut it into pieces, and a red and green pepper sliced, and a white onion, sliced. Heat my wok up to very very hot, a few tablespoons of olive oil, and throw in the sausages until they are cooked mostly through, pull them out, stir fry the peppers and onions until they are beginning to char slightly at the edges, put the sausages back in, and toss a little salt and pepper over it all, and serve.

    The main trick to it I've found is to really get some heat under it, so that the peppers and onions get browned but not too soft.

    1. I would start at faicco's on bleeker street. an old italian market with precise flavoring and freshness in their sweet italian, spicy, cheese and parsley and fennel sausages
      260 bleeker street 212-243-1974
      or of course arthur avenue in the bronx. this,incidentally, is a real nt event to go toarthur avenue. anybody know the spot on arthur avenue for drop-dead sausage?

      5 Replies
        1. re: MaspethMaven

          It never hurts to know where to get a sausage fix when out of town. My personal faves in Philly are Fiorella's on Catherine St and Cannuli's at 16th and Ritner.

          1. re: Den

            True enough. I don't have favorites in NY, but I almost always get one at Shea Stadium. Not great, but there's something about sausage and peppers at the ball park.

            When we make them at home, we smoke the onions and peppers a little by grilling them on a sheet of foil over the grill grate. then we put the coil of sausage down on the grill and wrap the onios and peppers up to sweat while the sausage cooks. Then we get a foil tray, like the kind you'd use in a sterno rack, and dump the onions, peppers and sausage in there to keep warm. Added to the onion and pepper is a little salt, some black pepper, and red pepper flakes.

            1. re: MaspethMaven

              If you go to Yankee Stadium to watch a real baseball team, you'll be doubly rewarded with an excellent hot sausage and pepper sandwich.

              1. re: ESNY

                Leave baseball out of this.

      1. AnnaEA is spot on. I would just throw in some white wine while cooking at the white hot stage, would possibly use light soy sauce instead of salt, and would adjust chili depending on sausage.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Sam Fujisaka

          I would consider soy if I was looking for an Asian flavor but I'm looking for Italian.

        2. I brown the sausage (hot, italian), first five min., then add slices onion & peppers, another 5 min., stirring w/ wooden spoon in a couple tablespoons olive oil, s&p. After everything is brown and wilted, I add 1 cup merlot, bring to a simmer, cover & cook about 15 min. Take sausage out, and slice on the diagonal, one inch pieces. Serve on small rolls.

          1. I worked on the boardwalk in Pt. Pleasant Beach as a teenager...here is the recipe that we used at Martell's no real measurements though, and we used to make it in a pizza oven. I get a similar result using a regular oven on around 400 and a jelly roll pan. This isn't a precise recipe...but it is easy enough that they used to let the summer help make it without much supervision.

            Sweet Onions
            Green Peppers
            Salt, Pepper, Oregano, Thyme, Garlic Power
            Olive Oil

            Slice peppers & onions int about 1/4 inch strips, put in the jelly roll pan, sprinkle with spices and oil, toss to coat. Roast until soft (around 1/2 hour or so...I do it by sight). Put in an aluminum pot and reserve until later.

            Sweet and/or Hot Sausage (the best you can find). Pierce with fork to release grease.
            Roast in a separate sheet pan, on a rack so the grease drains away. Roast until you can smell them...We used to also make meatballs (ground beef, breadcrumbs, egg and italian spices) and roast them at the same time.

            Make homade spagetti sauce (or if you aren't up to that, I use a good jar of tomato/basil sauce), add sausage & meatballs and simmer for a while until they are soft..

            Schred whole-milk mozarrella (spelling? Where is the spell check on this stuff?).

            Get good rolls (I like the ones at Panera)

            Slice open roll, scoop out some of the bread to make room. Add a sausage, scoop out a few pieces of onion and peppers, sprinkle with mozarella, a tablespoon of sauce and broil for a few seconds (or microwave---we did that on the boardwalk most of the time).

            You can make as much or as little as you want...if you make a bunch, sausage&meatball sauce will keep about two days in the fridge. Make the peppers&onions fresh.

            Note: Left over peppers/onions from previous day is GREAT in scrambled eggs on two slices of toast for breakfast...standard morning boardwalk fare for the Italian crowd on the Jersey shore.

            1 Reply
            1. re: slvrrnbws

              Yes and that's my recipe too, up to a point. We don't use tomato sauce. When the vegetables and sausages are almost finished, they are tossed into a large skillet, red wine vinegar is added and all simmers for a few minutes to let the flavors come together. Sometimes we use rolls, and sometimes basmati rice. To each his own.

            2. Yep, that's what I'm talking about

              1. I like to get some cheese (brie or something equally fatty) and a loaf of crusty French or Italian bread to have with the sausages, peppers and onions. Also, if you add a little balsamic vinegar to the peppers and onions, they will get a little caramelized. Sometimes I use the fancy "different" chicken sausages (goat cheese and artichoke etc) rather than good ole Italian ones just to mix it up or pretend to be "healthier"

                1. I start by poaching the best Italian sausages I can find (I buy them at an Italian market that makes their own) in red wine, usually Chianti but I'll use anything that's left over. I usually just throw them into a baking pan, fill it half way with red wine, stick in the oven at 400 degrees, then turn the sausages over after about 30 minutes and cook another 30 minutes. Meanwhile, I sautee the onions for a bit first in olive oil, add red and green peppers, and lots of chopped garlic, and salt and pepper. Remove the veggies to a bowl, quickly toss the sausages (already poached and now sliced on the bias) into the pan to brown them a bit more, throw a salad together, and dinner is served!


                  1. My family loves Rachael Ray's recipe for Sausage, Pepper and Onion Hoagies. I don't actually eat the sausage, just the peppers. I think her secret ingredient is a few tablespoons of the liquid from hot cherry peppers ( along with some of the peppers). I fill my roll with just the peppers, and they're yummy. I don't know how to include the link, but you can get the recipe from Food Network.
                    For those of us far away from Bleeker Street, is there a good sausage one can find in the grocery store? Maybe, then, I would eat the sausage.

                    1. One of those dishes where, IMO, less is more. The only thing I ever use in addition to fried onions and peppers and grilled sausage is a little salt on the veggies and maybe some provolone. Also, I leave the sausage in links. I only slice it for something like a scallopini.

                      1. I come from an Italian family and we have been making sausage and peppers for years. I recently came across a recipe from Giada Di Laurentis and could not believe how great it was. I used pork sausage instead of the turkey the recipe calls for and my family loved it and it's the only way I make it now (with some minor variations in the spices). Here's the link:


                        1 Reply
                        1. re: olivertwist

                          I make this as well, it is really good

                        2. I've got 12 links and a potluck/pool party to attend, which could run many hours in an outdooor setting. I was thinking of throwing them on the BBQ in advance at my place, letting them cool, slicing them and then adding to a mix of onions/peppers, etc.

                          But given the potentially long time between prep and eating, I'm concerned about things drying out. Would it be better to cook them in liquid and keep them in that stage as much as possible? Water, wine, beer?

                          1. I can't tell you amounts. I simply don't know.
                            Heat up some good olive oil.
                            Saute sausages, I use hot only but you could mix.
                            Add onion and peppers when the sausage takes on some colour.
                            I usually add some dried oregano at this point.
                            Add red wine and a bit of chopped tomato.
                            Let it simmer so all the flavours meld.

                            IMPORTANT: Serve with a nice Vienna loaf and butter.


                            1. I first saute red, yellow and green peppers, vidalia onions and garlic in a little olive oil in a cast iron skillet. Then I will add a cup of red wine and a cup of water, bring it to a boil and then poach sausages in mixture. Then I will grill the sausages. While the sausages are grilling, I set the pan off onions and peppers on the cooler side of the grill so that the liquid reduces and the flavor concentrates. When the sausages are nicely browned, they go back in the pan of peppers and onion. If you have the patience to wait 30- 45 minutes for the flavors to concentrate you will be left with the most amazing sausagie pepper onion mix and sausages also filled with good pepper onion flavor. If you can't wait, I recommend doing two batches of sausages so the second batch can spend an hour in the pepper and onion mix while you eat the first.
                              I do something similar with brats and sauerkraut. But that is for a different post.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: kolgrim

                                That's a whole new technique. I'll try it. Thank you.