Let Apples Become The Perfect Complement For A Hearty Sausage Dish

Roasted sausages with chunks of squash and apples
Roasted sausages with chunks of squash and apples - Michelle McGlinn/Tasting Table

A juicy sausage is perfect on its own, but pair it with a stellar side and now we're really talking. Despite that sausage is a match for delights like mashed potatoes, grilled peppers, and onions, or a helping of sauerkraut, there's one ingredient that can be a real game-changer. Drawing inspiration from the iconic duo of pork and apples, the sweetly tart fruit can easily be incorporated into your next sausage supper, elevating flavor beyond your wildest dreams.

Pairing fruit and meat is about balancing flavor. Essentially, apples contribute a honeyed sweetness that can tame the abundance of umami and even saltiness from the sausages. Given that apples also boast a fair amount of acidity, they can even cut through the richness of fatty links of meat. Keeping each other in check, the duo ultimately enhances one another, which is exactly the case with Tasting Table recipe developer Michelle McGlinn's zesty, sausage and apple sheet pan meal.

While McGlinn suggests using bratwurst, any pork sausage (plain, fennel, spicy, and beyond) will do the trick, and chicken or turkey sausage also works. As for which apple variety fares best in the roasted recipe, there's room to experiment with anything from tart Granny Smiths to honeyed Fujis. But, we'd opt for the latter as its candied and creamy profile works well against both meaty sausage and chunks of sweet buttery squash. However, if you're looking for other ways to go about combining the ingredients, know that there are other options, too.

Read more: 30 Healthy Snack Ideas That Won't Ruin Your Diet

Think Outside Of The Box When Pairing Apple And Sausage

Roasted sausage coins with vegetables and apples
Roasted sausage coins with vegetables and apples - zi3000/Shutterstock

When introducing apples into a sausage-based recipe, taste shouldn't be the only factor to consider. Along with ensuring a harmonious contrast of flavor, it's also essential to think about texture, which is particularly important if the ingredients are being cooked together. For instance, while a sturdy Pink Lady can maintain its shape when tossed into an apple and sausage stew, the same can't be said for a tender McIntosh that's better geared for being reduced into a sauce, glaze, or gravy to accompany grilled sausage links.

Additionally, it pays off to think about aesthetics. For example, a few slices of a vibrantly fresh Red Delicious apple can provide a pleasant pop of color (and crunch!) to a sizzling sausage and apple panini. Similarly, crumbling a handful of Gala apple chips over a sausage-topped salad can be a creative way to pair the two ingredients, as well. But, the pairing possibilities don't end there.

Apples and sausages can even be used as supporting ingredients in a recipe. After removing the meat from its casing, saute the sausage with diced fruit before adding it to a risotto or mac and cheese. Bits of sausage could also be introduced into a pureed apple and honeynut squash soup. Otherwise, shredded apples can be mixed with the meat to make sausage rolls. Whatever you decide, the sweet tanginess of an apple is sure to jazz up any super-savory sausage recipe!

Read the original article on Tasting Table.