Polenta with Chicken Italian Sausage & Sautéed Summer Vegetables

This creamy dish is bright with Italian flavors, courtesy of pungent mixed peppers and summer squash.

Ingredients:
Polenta
4 cups chicken stock
¼ cup water
4 links chicken Italian sausage
2 red Bell peppers, seeded and thinly sliced
1-2 Piment d’Espellete peppers, seeded and thinly sliced*
2 mixed summer squash, washed and thinly sliced
1 Walla Walla sweet onion, peeled and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Grated Grana-style cheese
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

*Depending on your heat preference, feel free to tweak the quantity of these smoky, slightly-spicy peppers to your liking.

Method:
1. Bring chicken stock and ¼ cup water to a simmer in a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan. Add polenta mix in a slow stream, whisking until incorporated. Simmer, stirring frequently with a long-handled whisk or wooden spoon, until liquid is absorbed and polenta is thick and soft, about 15-20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, in a skillet, cook sausages in a half inch of water until done and remove to a plate and keep warm. Discard cooking water. In the same skillet, add both varieties of peppers, summer squash, garlic and onions along with a drizzle of olive oil and turn heat up to high. Sauté vegetables, turning just occasionally until all just begin to blister and char. Add sausage, turning down heat, and continue cooking until the sausages are browned. Slice sausages diagonally in large slices to serve.

3. Remove polenta from heat and stir in Grana cheese, and salt and pepper to taste. Top with sausage and pepper mixture. Serve immediately.

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