Italian sausages with peppers and onions (Spetzofai)

Italian sausages with peppers and onions (Spetzofai)

Photo and text by Panos Diotis and Mirella Kaloglou.

Calories (per serving): 
686
Servings: 
Cooking Time: 

This is definitely one of the tastiest and easiest  traditional Greek recipes for sausage! Spetzofai or Spetsofai is a popular rustic dish, which is originated from the area aroung Pelion/Pilion mountain.

It's a specialty of the city of Volos, combining Italian Sausages with peppers and onions. If you happen to be around this area, don't miss the opportunity to taste this! 
Unoftunately, not all of us can visit Volos, so we will tell you how to cook Spentzofai in your own kitchen.

 

In this recipe, we will use the Italian sausages which are easier to find outside Greece. In Greece however, we always use the Country sausage, which is called Horiatiko Loukaniko, and is an amazing traditional sausage, with lots of spices and herbs. If your are able to get some Greek Country Sausages, don't miss the opportunity to cook them this way!
Some versions of Spetzofai include green and red bell peppers. In our version, we will use the sweet green long peppers which are amazing when combined with the onions and the sausages.  If you can also get the Greek version of the sweet green long peppers, which are called Kerato (they are  much sweeter than other varieties) it adds a bit more sweetness to the dish. 
So let's start cooking this delicious traditional Greek dish!

 

Ingredients: 

- 300gr/11oz long sweet green peppers*, cut into thin stripes (seeded)
- 400gr/14oz Italian sausages*, cut into pieces 4cm(1.5in) long 
- 250gr/9oz onion (2 medium sized), cut in thick slices
- 70gr/2.5oz (3 tablespoons) tomato paste
- 125ml (1/2 cup) olive oil 
- 175g/6oz fresh tomato, grated and drained
- 125ml white wine, (1/2 cup)
- 1 tablespoon paprika, preferably smoked 
- salt and pepper
* prefer the Greek version of sweet green peppers, called Kerato and the Greek country sausages if you can find some.

 

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Put the olive oil in a large frying pan, on medium to high heat. Add the sausages and saute for 1 minute.
Add the peppers and the onion and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionaly. Pour the wine, cook for 3 minutes to allow the alcohol to evaporate and then add the tomato, the tomato paste and the paprika. Lower the heat to medium-low, and cook until the sauce thickens.
Serve with fresh bread and feta cheese on the side. Kali oreksi!

 

Tips: 

1. This dish is also served as a 'meze' (starter/appetizer).
2. You can also add some chopped eggplant in this dish, but in this case you must increase the amount of oil used and the cooking time. Add the eggplant when you add the onion.
3. If you prefer a spicier result you can also add a small chilly pepper along with the sweet peppers.

 

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Comments

Asha (not verified)
I really like the color of the dish. I might try it out with chicken sausage sometime.
littlecookingtips
Thank you Asha! Never tried it with chicken sausage, only with pork or beef which are traditionally used when making Horiatiko Loukaniko (Greek Sausage) here. Let us know how it was, if you try this with chicken sausages!:)
Nami | Just One... (not verified)
I love Italian sausages but never cooked like this. I love the sauce and I need those extra bread to soak up the sauce! :)
littlecookingtips
Hi Nami! You sure will need the bread to sweep the sauce off the plate!
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