This savory Chicken Sausage and Mushroom Skillet is sauteed in Merlot then served over goat cheese grits for a satisfying stovetop meal.
When I first started cooking, I knew very little about wine. My mom rarely cooked with it, and while I know my parents occasionally had a glass, it wasn’t very common. My mom’s cooking was wonderful, but the flavor didn’t come from wine, it came from butter. And lots of it! (Can I get an amen?)
Needless to say, when I began experimenting with recipes with wine, I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. The first time I picked up a bottle for a recipe, I had to google “best wine for beef stew” to help me make my decision. I think I settled on a cheap burgundy (hey, I was still a poor college grad!), and walked home proud of myself for figuring this wine thing out.
I dug out the small wine opener from the
junk silverware drawer. It wasn’t a fancy one. Just a single screw sticking out of a plastic top. But I thought to myself, how hard could this possibly be? (You see where this is going, don’t you). I screwed the corkscrew into the cork then pulled. And pulled. And pulled some more.
My efforts didn’t seem to be working so I unscrewed the corkscrew and rescrewed it. Still no luck. So I did it again. Still no luck. By this time the cork was a mangled mess and I was flustered. I decided this cork was coming out if it was the last thing I did! So I braced myself, applied plenty of pressure, and yanked with all my frustrated, exasperated might.
Annnnnd, I broke the wine bottle. Like, shards of glass were all over the countertop and floating in the wine. The whole bottle was ruined, but gosh darn it, that cork came out.
Thankfully, I’ve come a long way since then. After hearing the story, my mom went out and bought me a nice corkscrew, complete with wings, just to make sure I wouldn’t be breaking any more perfectly good wine bottles. Now, cooking (and drinking) wine has become second nature. But if I’m honest I still brace myself every time I pull the cork.
Today, the #SundaySupper team and I are sharing recipes with a story. Hopefully everyone else’s are much less embarrassing than my own. Either way, there’s nothing embarrassing about this hearty Chicken Sausage Skillet.
One of my favorite dinners is a simple saute of onions, mushrooms, and peppers with some kind of protein. It’s a complete gluten free meal, it’s incredibly satisfying, and it can easily be made on a weeknight.
This version is glammed up with the addition of Gallo Family Vineyards’ Merlot. Paired with apple chicken sausage, the merlot brings a rich, slightly fruity note to the sauteed vegetables.
I wanted to serve this saute over something warm and hearty, and these goat cheese grits fit the bill. If you think grits only belong on the breakfast table, this dish just might convince you otherwise. I’ve started to make savory, cheesy grits as a stand-in for mashed potatoes, and I really love the flavor and texture they bring. This version is swirled with melty goat cheese and it makes a wonderful, buttery pillow for the merlot chicken sausage and vegetables.
The combination is a strange but wonderful high brow/low brow, Italian meets Southern mash up. You’re gonna love it.
Compensation was provided by Gallo Family Vineyards via Sunday Supper, LLC. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author, and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Gallo Family Vineyards.
For the chicken sausage skillet:
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 4 chicken sausage links (I used apple chicken sausage), sliced**
- 1 yellow onion, sliced
- 2 bell peppers, sliced
- 8 ounces crimini mushrooms, quartered
- 1 garlic clove, grated
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- 1/3 cup Gallo merlot wine
For the grits:
- 4 cups water
- Pinch salt
- 1 cup grits
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 2 ounces goat cheese
For the skillet:
- Heat 1 Tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken sausage and saute until browned. Remove chicken sausage to a plate.
- Add the onion and bell peppers to the skillet and saute until onion begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the final Tablespoon of oil along with the mushrooms and garlic clove. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Saute until mushrooms are browned and softened, another 3-5 minutes.
- Pour in the merlot and use it to help scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pan (that's where all the flavor is). Add the chicken sausage back to the pan, and allow the mixture to cook, stirring occasionally, for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
For the grits:
- Meanwhile, bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the grits and pinch of salt. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick enough that the grits no longer sink to the bottom, 2-3 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook for 10 minutes then remove cover and give the mixture a good stir, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom well). Repeat for two more 10 minute periods, cooking for a total of 30 minutes.
- Remove the grits from heat. Stir in the butter and goat cheese, allowing it to melt.
- Serve grits with the chicken sausage mixture ladled on top.
**Always make sure to check your labels on the chicken sausage if you're preparing this gluten free. Not all chicken sausage is gluten free.
Recipe by NeighborFood