Sausages with Beans (Salsicce Con Fagioli)

This unassuming dish is particularly good when made with a mixture of Italian hot and sweet sausages if these are available. If they are not, use ordinary beef sausages and a little garlic sausage, chopped.


6 - 8 servings
450 g (1 lb) 2 2/3 cups Dried white haricot (dried white) beans, soaked overnight and drained
1 1/4 litre (2 pints) 5 cups Water
2 Tbs Olive oil
700 g (1 1/2 lb) Italian or other sausages
2 Medium onions, chopped
2 Garlic cloves, crushed
2 Medium green peppers, pith and seeds removed and chopped
425 g (14 oz) Canned peeled tomatoes
250 ml (8 fl oz) 1 cup Water
1 tsp Dried sage
1 Tbs Tomato puree (paste)
2 tsp Sugar
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Put the beans and water into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the beans for 45 minutes, or until they are just tender. Drain and set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole. Add the sausages and fry until they are lightly and evenly browned and have rendered some of their fat. Transfer to a plate and keep hot.

3. Pour off all but about 2 tablespoons of oil from the casserole. Add the onions, garlic and peppers and fry until they are soft. Stir in the tomatoes and can juice and water, and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook for a further 3 minutes. Stir in all the remaining ingredients and add the beans and sausages. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan. Simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally, or until the sausages are cooked through and the mixture is fairly dry.

4. Either serve at once or allow to cool completely and chill overnight in the refrigerator.

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