Since we live conveniently close to Fresh Approach, a fantastic butcher shop in the West End, we are constantly trying to figure out something new to do with sausage. Though sausage has never been one of our “staple” foods, Fresh Approach is constantly taunting us with their homemade versions, spiked with peppers, bacon, and sometimes even beer. But once you’ve made pasta, sprinkled it on a pizza, or slipped it into a bun, what do you do with gigantic, link sausage?
You crumble it onto warm spinach, put a fried egg on top, and pretend it’s a salad, that’s what. We love the way the heat from the pan ever so slightly warms and wilts the spinach, and when you mix the whole thing up with a sunny side up fried egg, the yolk combines with the oil and lemon juice to make a quick, on-the-spot vinaigrette. It’s fast, it’s easy, and it has turned into one of our weeknight staples.
Warm Spinach & Sausage Salad
- 6 ounces ground hot Italian sausage
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- Fresh lemon juice from half a lemon (about a tablespoon)
- Half a bag of baby spinach (about 3 ounces)
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)
- 2 large eggs
Cook sausage in a large skillet over medium heat until brown and crumbly; about 10 minutes. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon and set aside, leaving drippings in pan. Add oil, lemon juice, and lemon zest to the pan, stirring to break up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan, for about a minute. Remove from heat, add spinach, and use tongs to coat spinach evenly. Add salt and pepper to taste, and divide spinach into two bowls. Sprinkle each with the sausage, and top with over-easy or sunny side up fried egg.