In the summertime, when “real” homegrown tomatoes are available, this is one of my favorite recipes. During the tomato offseason, I’ll usually prepare this dish with canned tomatoes rather than grocery store tomatoes. Then I won’t whine about the lack of flavor from the so-called “vine-ripened” store-bought tomatoes as compared to the real deals. Who do they think they’re fooling?

Although this recipe is a main-course serving, you can also serve it without the pasta as an appetizer course.

Venison Sausage with Rustic Tomato Sauce

Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: BBQ, big game recipes
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 large venison sausages
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 3 cups tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • pinch sugar
  • pinch or two red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup kalamata olives, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 cups warm, cooked pasta – any variety
  • 2 tbsp melted butter

Instructions

  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sausages, and brown evenly, about 6 to 7 minutes. Add remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, onion and carrots. Saute for 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic, and saute 2 minutes more. Add tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, pepper flakes, olives, basil and oregano, and cook for 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Toss pasta with butter, and mound on plates. Top with a sausage, and spoon tomato mixture over.

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