Risotto, Sausage, Red Pepper, Caramelized Onions, errant turkey legs

When we lived in Minnesota we went to the Renaissance Festival every year. The acts were fun, the artisan shops were interesting but it was always the food that caught our attention.

We would skip breakfast and head out early so we had a sufficient appetite to sample anything and everything that caught our fancy.

One of our favorites was the Knave Sandwich…. A simple roasted sausage smothered in grilled peppers and onions.

That’s what I was remembering when I made this.

Risotto, Sausage, Red Pepper, Caramelized Onions

Total time: 30 minutes


  • 2/3 cup (4.2oz, 125gr) Arborio rice (or other rice specifically for risotto – Carnaroli or Vialone Nano)
  • 1/2 cup (4oz, 120ml) dry, white wine
  • 2 1/4 cups (18oz, 540ml) chicken stock
  • 1/2 onion, chopped, other half for the condimenti
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese – freshly grated  (about 2oz, 60gr)
  • Condimenti:
  • 6oz (180gr) sausages, cut into 1″ (2.5cm) pieces any flavor, hot or not  
  • 1 medium red pepper, sliced
  • 1 1/2 onions, sliced
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp Balsamic vinegar

Caramelized Onion Risotto


  • Heat chicken stock and keep hot over low heat.
  • Start condimenti
  • In medium saucepan heat butter over medium heat.  Add onion and sauté until transparent.
  • Add rice and sauté stirring, for 2 – 3 minutes until rice has white center.
  • Add white wine and stir.
  • When wine is almost absorbed add a 1/3 cup of stock, stir.
  • When stock is almost absorbed add another 1/3 cup and continue adding 1/3 cup at a time and stirring.
  • Before the last 1/3 cup taste a few kernels of rice.  They should be just ‘al dente’ – slightly resistant to the tooth but fully cooked.  If more stock is needed add it 1/6 cup at a time and waiting until almost completely absorbed.
  • At this point risotto will be thick but not stiff – there will still be visible liquid and it will not hold its shape on a plate.
  • Stir in the Parmesan and condimenti, spoon into a bowl or risotto platter and serve immediately.  It will continue to absorb liquid and the leftovers (if any) will be very stiff.
  • Condimenti:
  • Heat butter and olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sliced onions in a single layer and sauté until starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low and turn / stir onions. 
  • Cook, stirring often, until nicely browned and starting to caramelize.
  • Add brown sugar, vinegar, reduce heat to low and let continue to cook slowly until needed
  • In another skillet sauté sausages and peppers until sausages are cooked through and peppers tender, 7 – 8 minutes. Add 1 tsp oil to start if needed. Keep warm.

Print Recipe

Dogs were allowed at the Renaissance Festival – it supposedly being a fair held in Medieval times and all.

One year (and only one year) we decided to take our St. Bernard. We had talked about it other years but usually decided not to. Either it was going to be too warm or too sunny or we had some specific purchase to make,… some reason that it wasn’t a good idea.

This day was cloudy and cool. Panda got to go the the Fair.

She loved it!

Well she loved the car ride and she loved being with us. She hated the crowds and the noise and the smells – it was all a bit overwhelming.

Then she discovered the ultimate reward: turkey legs.

In keeping with the the movie Tom Jones, turkey legs were a main food attraction. They were cooked on an open fire and handed out without a plate, just a napkin. One was supposed to grip the non-meaty end and rip the meat off with one’s teeth…. Preferable while strolling by the stalls.

I was not paying proper attention to my dog.

The group of guys ahead of us were not paying proper attention to their turkey legs.

A St. Bernard’s mouth is at about the same level as the end of a man’s swinging arm gripping a turkey leg.

The guy was very surprised when he discovered an empty hand; my dog was very pleased with herself and the kind person who almost hit her in the nose with a turkey leg and I was laughing too hard to do anything at all about it.

Now, back to the risotto….

Have you had a chance to look at my latest book? Pasta and Risotto

29 easy Pasta dishes and 21 creamy risottos – simple winter comfort food.

Kindle or any e-pub format as well as actual paper!

Have a look…..

5 thoughts on “Risotto, Sausage, Red Pepper, Caramelized Onions, errant turkey legs”

  1. I was just looking up the schedule for the Michigan Renaissance Festival when your post came through. Great minds…

    You can bring your dog to ours as well, but they must be registered prior to attending. I’ve never taken them because most places frown on Dobermans, even as well behaved and people loving as ours are so I don’t know what’s involved in the registration or why.

    I didn’t really ever make risotto until I started reading your blog. This one looks delicious!

  2. nightsmusic, I would eat risotto every night if I was allowed LOL. I think the Renaissance Festival in MN was the first one… back in the early 70’s, They’re probably more strict about the dogs now, too.

    Kate, Panda was a sweet, but large, Saint.

    Aw, thanks, sullimaybe ;-))

    Zoomie, dogs do add a lot of humor into our lives, don’t they….

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