8 Italian sausage links (sweet, hot, or combo)
4 tablespoons olive oil
3 orange, yellow, and/or red bell peppers, cored, seeds removed, sliced into narrow strips
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 large yellow onion, sliced
1 small (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 cup chicken broth
1 (24-ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried sage
1 teaspoon cayenne
1 tablespoon sugar
Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil over medium - low heat in a tall sauce pot. When the oil is hot, add the sausages and brown them slowly. If they sizzle and crackle too much, turn the heat down. Cook for several minutes, turning them occasionally so they lightly brown on all sides; remove from the pan and set aside. (If you double the recipe, brown sausages in batches. You can also half the recipe. It’s very user friendly and can be adjusted to suit your taste.)
Add the remaining ingredients to the pot and stir well to combine. Bring to a simmer then reduce the heat to low, stirring frequently; add the sausages. Cover and simmer on low until the peppers are soft the sausages are cooked through, at least two hours. It’s better if you cook very low for 6 – 8 hours. I remove the lid after several hours and reduce the sauce a bit to thicken.
For Crockpot – Mix sauce and brown the sausages. Pour half of sauce into crockpot. Add peppers, onions, and sausage. Cover with remaining sauce. Cover. Cook high 4 hours or low 8 hours.
Serve on Hoagie buns. Sometimes I butter and toast the buns, sometimes I leave them soft. You may want to offer freshly grated Parmesan or Mozzarella to top the sandwiches. If there are any left, just store in the refrigerator and reheat. They will probably be even better the next day.