Sautéed Andouille with Greens and Grits (Polenta)


I have a magazine problem.

A few years back, I had subscriptions to entirely too many magazines. I never resubscribed to any of my cooking magazines, because I already had such a cache of recipes saved from various outlets, but I still received a couple other magazines. After I had Zachary, it was like someone notified family publishers and I started randomly receiving all of these parenting magazines, on top of the stack already taking up space in my living room. And so, they’ve been sitting there, unread, for ages.

Even though I probably don’t have much use for a Rolling Stone circa April 2009, Zachary seems to enjoy “reading” every single magazine on the rack.  Frequently. He calls every kid a “girl” regardless of sex, enjoys pointing out the cars and dogs, and relishes in ripping out the subscription cards.

I decided to actually start reading some of my magazines—the ones that weren’t time-sensitive—so I began with several Real Simple magazines. I came across this recipe in the back of one of the issues, and I had nearly all the ingredients to make it, so it went on the menu a couple days later.

I didn’t have grits, so I used cornmeal and essentially made polenta. I know there is a difference between grits and cornmeal, including the grind, but I can never remember exactly what that difference is, and besides, I don’t really stock grits. Also, I didn’t have a bell pepper around, but I did have some frozen tricolored peppers, which I used in this recipe. I also lacked shallots (okay so maybe I didn’t have nearly all the ingredients after all…), but I used onions & garlic. Finally, I used chicken andouille.

The original recipe calls for boiling the greens and then removing them and cooking the grits in the same pot. While this does save a pot, I decided to just cook them separately, so I could start everything a little earlier and so I wasn’t cooking a small amount of polenta in a massive pot. I made the vast majority of the andouille sauteé as the liquid for the polenta boiled, and then just kept it warm so I could focus on whisking the polenta.


Sautéed Andouille with Greens and Grits/Polenta

Adapted from Real Simple
Serves 4 

1 large bunch collard greens, thick stems removed, chopped into 1″ pieces
1 Tbsp. canola oil (only if you are using chicken sausage)
3/4 lb. andouille sausage, sliced
1 small onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced or about 1 cup thinly sliced bell peppers
2 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
2/3 cup cornmeal
3/4 cup milk  (I used skim milk)
1.5 cups chicken broth, divided
3 oz. sharp white cheddar, shredded
1 Tbsp. butter

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop in the collards and simmer until tender, about 6-8 minutes. Drain well.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high, heat he canola oil if you are using chicken andouille. Otherwise, add the sliced andouille directly to the hot pan. Cook until nicely browned, about 4 minutes. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon. Stir in the onion and bell pepper, and cook until tender. Add the garlic, crushed red pepper, sausage, and the cooked collards. Stir until the collards and sausage are reheated.

Meanwhile, make the polenta. In a medium saucepan, bring the milk and 1 cup of chicken broth to a boil over medium heat. Slowly add the polenta, whisking to incorporate and prevent any clumping. Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking  until the mixture has thickened and the cornmeal is soft, stirring frequently. If the mixture gets too thick, add additional chicken broth.

Off the heat, stir in the cheese and the butter. Season the polenta with salt and pepper to taste.

Spoon the andouille and greens over the polenta.

Sautéed Andouille with Greens and Grits (Polenta)

11 thoughts on “Sautéed Andouille with Greens and Grits (Polenta)

  1. Sounds Delish!
    Being from the South, Collard Greens and Grits are a staple in my fridge.
    My fam hails from Savanah, and it’s a ‘No-No’ to ever boil a green. Instead we use our biggest black cast iron skillet and put in some seasoning (pork fat saved from prior cooking of bacon) or chop some raw bacon and fry first add a smidge of EVOO if the skillet is too dry and then throw in your washed and chopped greens. Also add some chopped onions and whole pieces of garlic. Throw them all in with a couple of dashes of powdered chicken bullion, and saute. Throw a lid on them and the steam with wilt them perfectly and you get to keep all the flavor and get some yummy carmelization out of the deal too!
    Regarding grits…Buy a 1 big bag for a dollar and keep them stored in the freezer, they will last forever. I never follow the directions on the bag as our family likes them firm.
    I just fill a medium saucepan with water bring to a boil, and then start adding the grits. If you want to use the directions for a ref. fine but I always add a lot more on top stirring in constantly as it’s boiling. Lower the heat once you have it all in cause you will get a nasty burn from the popping boiling grits if left on high. Once they are well cooked for like 7 mins. Then add salt to taste, WAAAAAAAAAAAAY tooooo much black pepper and waaaaaaaaaaaay toooooooooo much butter.
    Not only are grits great with greens but are also my fav. to put chili on top of instead of rice. Add a few tortilla chips and cheese and it is the best.
    Ideally, you want grits to be stiff enough that you actually cut them with your fork.
    Oh and let’s not forget to make some for breakfast . Basted eggs are best on them, with some bacon, or even some left over ham.

    I hope you learn to love the grits as much as the folks down south do, and I’m sure you will when you cook them the way they are supposed to be cooked!

  2. Wow – when did our babies turn into toddlers!? Apparently overnight. This looks like a meal we’d love. (Oh, and I have a magazine problem as well).

  3. Haha what you MEANT was that you had all of the IMPORTANT ingredients! I love anything polenta-infused. And that topping sounds like a great one!

    I’m pretty sure I’m going to be buried alive by my magazines one of these days. It’s quite unfortunate.

  4. First of all, Zachery is as (or more) delicious than any dish you can post.

    Although I don’t comment on every post, I always know that every dish you post is packed with levels of flavor. You do a great job, Elly.

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