This recipe is my very successful attempt at recreating a dish I had at Habibi’s Middle Eastern Kitchen. I’ve eaten soujouk and ma’anak (Middle Eastern sausages), for years, but the preparation was almost always a very simple pan sear. They’re pretty good that way, but it’s really just heating them up, so the only real difference in flavor is the quality of the sausage. When I finally tried another version it really surprised me and I never knew soujouk was so versatile.
The dish consisted of sliced soujouk mixed with onions and tomatoes to create a kind of spicy ragu flavored by the sausage itself. The really mind blowing addition was the creamy sauce layered on top of the dish. After some prodding of one of the servers at Habibi’s, I finally got him to tell me the secret and it turns out the ingredient isn’t Middle Eastern at all! It was a smoky chipotle sauce that really made the dish. Keeping that in mind, I created this recipe to emulate probably the best soujouk preparation I’ve ever had to date.
Lebanese Soujouk Recipe Sauteed with Tomatoes and Onions
- 1 pound Soujouk dried beef sausage (Not all soujouk is created equal. There are many kinds and brands, so some experimentation may be required to find the one you enjoy the best. Personally for me, I think the ones with the best flavor are the ones that are dry cured, vacuum sealed, and the sausages look flattened a bit.)
- 2 chopped Plum tomatoes
- 1/2 large Sweet onion
- 1/2 cup Plain tomato sauce
- 1/4 tsp Kosher salt (Less if using table salt)
- 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
- 2 loaves Pita pocket bread (Optional, but recommended.)
- Creamy chipotle sauce (Optional: Creamy chipotle dressing/dip can be purchased from a grocery store or you can make a version fairly easily by adding a tablespoon of canned chipotle sauce (not the peppers themselves) to a cup of yogurt or a 1:1 mix of yogurt and sour cream.)
- Cutting board
- Large saute pan
- Two bowls
- Tablespoon and teaspoon measurements
- Uniformly chop 2 roma or plum tomatoes and set aside.
- Chop half a sweet onion into pieces of similar size to the tomatoes.
- Slice the soujouk into 1/4 inch pieces.
- In a large sautee pan add 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and bring the heat up to medium or medium high.
- Sautee the soujouk until the sausage pieces start to take on some color (maybe 5 minutes at most) and get just a little crispy around the edges. Be careful not to overcook them because depending on the brand or how dry the soujouk is to start, it can overcook quickly.
- Add in the onions and mix well with the soujouk and let them cook for maybe a minute before adding the tomatoes. Stir everything together and let them cook together for a few minutes until the onions and tomatoes are soft.
- Add in the 1/2 cup of tomato sauce and a 1/4 teaspoon of salt to the pan and mix everything well.
- Simmer everything altogether for 8 – 12 minutes just to incorporate all of the flavors.
- When ready, serve the soujouk in two wide, shallow bowls. It’s ready to eat as is, but add-ons can really make the dish great.
- In order to really make the dish perfect, try adding a bit of creamy chipotle sauce for some smoky spiciness that works absurdly well in this dish. Use pita bread to dip into the sauce and to scoop up delicious pieces of sausage.
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