Italian Style Sausage and Peppers over Rustic Soft Polenta

Recipe by Joan Gigliotti, Weavers Way member


  • 1 pack (3-4 links) of pork or chicken sausage (recommend Martin’s Sausage, seasoned with garlic peppers, and wine), cut into 1-1-½ inch cubes
  • 3-4 tri-color bell peppers (deseeded), cut into large dice
  • 2 medium zucchini (organic preferred) cut into large nickels
  • 4 gloves of garlic, peeled and smashed (left whole)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp. dry oregano
  • 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. fennel seeds
  • 1 large yellow onion, cut into a large dice
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 1 generous pinch of Kosher salt

Polenta by Bellino

  • 1-½ cups Polenta (instant)
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3 Tbsp. butter

This classic Italian American dish dates back to the Feast of San Gennaro, where it was first served in 1927. Italian immigrants have served many variations of sausage and peppers at street festivals and church feasts throughout the United States. My Sicilian grandmother, Doratea, made sausage and peppers for countless family gatherings, showcasing the bounty from her garden as well as the unforgettable aroma of her freshly baked bread.

This dish is easy, delicious, and very versatile — you could serve it with polenta, pasta, or folded into a baguette with a little shaved sharp provolone. The flavors in this dish are divine!


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Put all ingredients in a large bowl and mix.
  3. Place mixed ingredients on a 9x13-inch sheet tray with parchment paper on the bottom; put in preheated oven.
  4. Bake until vegetables are tender and sausage is cooked thoroughly, about 40-45 minutes.
  5. On stove top, make polenta.

Polenta by Bellino

  1. Bring water to a boil, add in salt, and gradually stir in polenta with a wooden spoon.
  2. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes or until polenta comes away from the walls of the pot.
  3. Stir in butter and let stand for 5 minutes.

Sauce and Plating

I generally prefer a quick red sauce with polenta. For this recipe, I used bottled Rao’s marinara.

For plate presentation: In a deep bowl, pour 1 large ladle of marinara (preheated), add a large ladle of polenta, and top with sausage and peppers mixture. Add fresh snipped basil and grated parmesan. Pairing this meal with Ruffino Chianti is perfection. Enjoy! Mangia and Salute.