Sausage Stuffing


2 tablespoons olive oil
10 ounces hot Italian sausage, out of the casting
1 white onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
1/8 teaspoons red pepper flakes
3/4 pound mushrooms, finely sliced
1 bay leaf
3/4 cup white wine
1 (14 1/2 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, drained and chopped, juices reserved separately
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
2 eggs
1 cup Italian Bread Crumbs (see page 218)
3/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese


Makes 2 1/2 to 3 Cups

Pour the oil into a nonstick saute pan set on medium heat and brown the sausage for 3 minutes, crumbling it with the back of a wooden spoon. Transfer the sausage to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside.

Discard all but 3 tablespoons of the fat left in the saute pan. On medium heat, cook the onion for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, redduce the heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. Increase the heat to high, add the sliced mushrooms and bay leaf, stir well and cook 2 minutes. Add the wine and cook until it has almost evaporated, about 3 minutes. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, reduce the heat to medium and cook 2 minutes. Add the parsle, basil, reserved juices and cooked sausage, stir well, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The misture should be fairly thick and almost dry. If it is very watery, cook for 3 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.

Add the eggs, bread crumbs and cheese and mix well. The stuffing should be very thick and fairly moist. If it is still watery, add more cheese and bread crumbs to your taste.