Posts Tagged ‘italian sausage’
Other than pumpkin, I think butternut squash may be my favorite type of squash. But for some reason I only think to cook with it during the winter and the same with pumpkin during the fall. To solve this problem, I decided to buy more butternut squash than I needed for this recipe, and saved the remaining peeled and cubed pieces in my freezer. Muwahaha! Now to just remember it is there to use later. That may be the bigger problem because if you saw how stuffed my freezer was year-round, you’d understand. “How long has that homemade ice cream been in here?? And what flavor is it? ::sniff::” Seriously happened. Also discovered frozen boxes of Girl Scout cookies the other day. How do you forget about those? Oh yea, they were blocked by the 10 packages of butter I stocked up on when it went on sale. Serious food blogger problems in my fridge.
But I digress, let’s focus on unfrozen food such as this pasta. The butternut squash is pureed to function as the sauce itself, and what a fantastic idea! It’s complimented very nicely with the spicy sausage and the winter-ific sage. And don’t forget the spinach to finish off this healthy meal. But I decided to curb that a little by serving it with pull apart garlic bread. Mmm garlicky carbs.
And a Happy Birthday shout-out to my big brother!! Happy 33rd!
One year ago: Blizzard Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Cookies
Two years ago: Buttermilk Pancakes
PASTA WITH BUTTERNUT SAUCE, SPICY SAUSAGE AND BABY SPINACH
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled and diced
10 oz. pasta of your choice
11 oz. (4 links) spicy chicken Italian sausage
1 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup shallots, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp fresh shaved Parmesan cheese
4 sage leaves, sliced thin
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add butternut squash and cook until soft. Remove squash with a slotted spoon and place in a blender or food processor, blend until smooth.
- Add pasta to the boiling water and cook according to package directions for al dente, reserving at least 1 cup of the pasta water before draining.
- Meanwhile, in a large deep non-stick skillet, sauté sausage over medium heat until browned, breaking up with a spoon as it cooks. When cooked through, set aside on a plate.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and melt the butter, sauté the shallots and garlic until soft and golden, about 5 – 6 minutes. Add pureed butternut squash, season with with salt and fresh cracked pepper and add a little of the reserved pasta water (I used about 1 cup) to thin out the sauce to your liking. Add baby spinach and stir in Parmesan cheese and sage.
- Toss in cooked pasta and sausage and mix until well coated.
- Serve with additional Parmesan cheese on the side if desired.
Source: Gina’s Skinny Taste
It’s amazing how much time goes by during the work day when you are starring at your computer screen, moving figures and text boxes around one pixel at a time in attempts to get everything fitted and sized nicely. This is how poster presentations are done in my world, in preparation for the upcoming research conference my lab is attending. And it’s a royal pain in my bottom. The scariest part is that even after making it pretty, my PI can undo everything by telling me to add one simple sentence, and thus offsetting everything. The horror! I feel like a magician by the end of it all because I will have more than once uttered the phrase, “There’s no way it is going to work”, and yet there it is in front of me. But for now I await the edits of destruction.
While I pull out my hair and eat plentiful amounts of dark chocolate covered mini pretzels (the most recent Trader Joe’s lab-obsession), I want you to sit back and enjoy a good healthy meal. How about some zucchini stuffed with Italian turkey sausage? I cannot be alone in still experiencing 98 degree weather despite the name of the month stated on the calendar, which means some of you probably still have some zucchini around from your garden (of which I am jealous). If not, it’s a good thing they invented a thing called the grocery store .
One year ago: Beermosa
SAUSAGE STUFFED ZUCCHINI BOATS
4 (31 oz total) medium zucchini
1-1/4 cups marinara sauce
14 oz lean Italian chicken sausage (I used turkey)
1 tsp oil
1/2 small onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup part skim shredded Mozzarella
8 tsp grated Parmesan cheese
- Bring a large pot of water to boil. And preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Cut zucchini in half lengthwise and using a spoon or melon baller, scoop out flesh, leaving 1/4″ thick. Chop the scooped out flesh of the zucchini in small pieces and set aside. Drop zucchini halves in boiling water and cook 1 minute. Remove from water.
- Place 1/4 cup of sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 12″ baking dish, and place zucchini halves cut side up.
- In a large saute pan, brown sausage, breaking up as it cooks into smaller pieces until browned; set aside. Heat oil and add onion, garlic and bell pepper. Cook on a medium-low heat for about 2-3 minutes, until onions are translucent. Add chopped zucchini, season with salt and pepper and cook about 2-3 minutes. Combine with sausage and cook a few more minutes.
- Using a spoon, fill each hollowed zucchini with 1/3 cup cooked sausage, pressing firmly. Top each with 2 tablespoons each of sauce, 1 tablespoon each of shredded Mozzarella cheese and 1 teaspoon each of Parmesan cheese.
- Cover with foil and bake 35 minutes until cheese is melted and zucchini is cooked through.
Source: Gina’s Skinny Taste
Ask and you shall receive. On my last pizza post, many of you left comments to keep the pizzas rolling so here’s this week’s installment! This time I’ve made a recipe I found on Bev Cooks awhile back. You make a pesto using spinach leaves for the sauce, and top it off with red pepper, Italian sausage and of course Mozzarella cheese. It’s a pretty fantastic little dance of ingredients. And they certainly look good together too!
Of course as with all of my pizza recipes, you do not need a stone and peel to make pizza at home. Just cook it on a pizza pan or cookie sheet as you prefer, but I am convinced that the crust comes out as pure perfection when using a stone. So you really should get your hands on one sooner rather than later. Probably my favorite kitchen item ever. And I am sure you can tell how well-loved it is by it’s stained appearance in pictures.
By the way, is anyone shocked that I rate every pizza I make as 2-3 servings? Maybe I am just a fat kid but there’s hardly a pizza made in my kitchen that ends up producing more than 3 servings. Maybe I cut my slices too big, but I don’t care O:-).
One year ago: Review: Just Tell Me What to Eat!
SAUSAGE, RED BELL PEPPER AND SPINACH PESTO PIZZA
2 cups baby spinach
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 pine nuts, toasted
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus 1 Tbsp
1 Italian sausage, casing removed
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into thin sticks
1 recipe thin-crust pizza dough
1 cup shredded mozzarella
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees, with pizza stone on bottom rack.
- In a food processor add the spinach, garlic, Parmesan, pine nuts, and a pinch of salt and pepper. With the motor running, add the oil in a thin stream until pesto-y. Set aside.
- Heat the remaining tablespoon oil in a medium skillet and add the sausage. Break up with a wooden spoon and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Drain on a paper-towel lined plate. Set aside.
- To the same pan, add the red pepper. Add a little more oil if needed. Add a dash of salt.
- Transfer pizza dough to the preheated pizza stone using a cornmeal dusted pizza peel. Bake for 10 minutes or until slightly golden.
- Remove pizza and stone and evenly spoon the pesto over the crust. Sprinkle a little cheese on top. Then add the sausage and peppers. Then more cheese.
- Return pizza and stone to the oven and bake 10 minutes, or until golden brown and cheesy is bubbly. Slice and eat.
Source: Bev Cooks
Have you made plans for Valentine’s Day yet? I actually do not have any yet, but in the meantime have not slacked off on making Valentine’s Day inspired treats and meals. For example, after I mastered the stromboli I decided it was time to take on the calzone. But not just any calzone, but a heart-shaped one! And it conveniently serves two people. Or maybe four if you serve anything substantial on the side.
And if the shape alone wasn’t enough this baby is actually stuffed with sausage lasagna filling. Gooey, cheesy, meaty loveliness wrapped up in dough. Yup, go ahead and eat your heart out. (Sorry sorry couldn’t resist)
One year ago: Oreo Truffles
SAUSAGE LASAGNA HEART CALZONE
1/2 lb pizza dough
1 lb spicy Italian sausage
1-1/2 cups pizza sauce
8 oz low fat ricotta cheese
1/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
Pinch of salt, fresh cracked pepper
1/4 tsp Italian seasoning, plus more for topping (optional)
1 egg, beaten (for brushing dough)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Brown sausage until browned. Drain and return back to skillet. Add pasta sauce and reduce heat to low to simmer.
- Place ricotta, Parmesan, mozzarella cheese and seasonings in a mixing bowl. Mix until well combined.
- Cut the pizza doughs in half. On a floured sheet of parchment paper, form two large hearts and roll until about 1/8″ thick. Move one dough-heart onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Top the dough-heart on the baking sheet with sausage marinara then with ricotta (you may have leftovers), leaving a 1/2″ edge. Brush the edges of the dough with egg and top with remaining dough-heart. Press seams together, brush entire top lightly with egg then sprinkle with Italian seasoning. Cut a few slices in the top, transfer to a cookie sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes or until browned and cooked through.
Source: Adapted slightly from Picky Palate.
Lasagna is a great comfort food. But soup is my favorite comfort food right now, so why not combine the two? You should be able to figure out the answer to that judging by the title of this post you are reading, which is “yes, do it!” because the result is wonderful. I know it sounds weird at first because I thought the same thing. But I have been converted and am so glad that there are leftovers. And they are all mine – back off!
The ricotta-blob bread was my favorite part (thank you Stephanie for introducing the term ricotta-blob into my food vocabulary). The ricotta brought the entire lasagna-feel of the soup together. And I loved letting it soak up some of the soup juices. MMmm juices.
One year ago: Pumpkin Pancakes
LASAGNA SOUP WITH RICOTTA BREAD
2 tsp olive oil
1 lb Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-32 oz container reduced sodium chicken broth
1-15 oz can tomato sauce
1-14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
4 oz whole wheat pasta
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup + 3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided (plus more for topping)
1/2 cup lowfat ricotta
1 loaf multi-grain French bread, sliced 1/2″ thick
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup each of Parmesan, mozzarella and ricotta, set aside.
- Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large nonstick saucepot or Dutch oven. Add the sausage, onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sausage is crumbled and browned, 8 – 10 minutes.
- Add the broth, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, salt, and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the flavors are blended, about 20 minutes. Add the noodles; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the soup thickens slightly and the noodles are tender, 8-10 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella, basil, and the 3 tablespoons Parmesan.
- While the pasta cooks, spread a tablespoon of the cheese mixture onto each bread slice. Place on cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until cheese is golden and bread edges are crunchy. Sprinkle more Mozzarella on top of the soup and serve with ricotta-blob bread.
Leah and I made this last night to kick off our Harry Potter movie marathon, in preparation for the final movie coming out next week. You better believe we are going to the midnight showing! Unfortunately, the four others we convinced to start the marathon with us last night (4 who have never watched any of the movies, let alone read the books – blasphemy I say) will probably not be joining us for the duration. Advantage of reading the books as they came out (totally waiting in line more than once at midnight for it) and then watching the movies right as they hit the screen, I suppose. Somehow this meal wasn’t enough to convince them to come back for more.
This was the second time I’ve played with the Philadelphia cooking creme, and I continue to love it. I really need to try the other blends, because it makes for fun and quick meals. This dish in particular was almost a little too spicy for Leah, but I not only got seconds but thirds. And the not-so-much-Harry Potter fans found something else to be a fan of. In other words it was just marvelous… darling.
Oh, and this is completely unrelated but if I had a bunch of money lying around, I would buy these shoes in a heart beat. Size 7, mk thanks O:-).
1 lb fettuccine noodles (used Ronzoni’s Garden Delight)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 lb hot Italian turkey sausage, sliced thin
16 oz package frozen vegetable medley (used broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, zucchini, and yellow squash)
1 tub (10 0z) Philadelphia Italian Herb and Cheese Blend Cooking Creme
1/2 cup – 1 cup reserved pasta cooking water
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
1 tsp red pepper flakes, plus more for garnish
- Cook noodles according to directions. reserve pasta water.
- Heat large skillet over medium high heat with olive oil. Brown sausages for about 7 minutes. Add frozen vegetables, cover and let cook for about 5 minutes, until vegetables have thawed out. Add cooking creme and noodles to skillet and stir together. Add reserved pasta water, one ladle at at a time, until sauce is to your desired consistency. Stir in Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes. Serve immediately with more Parmesan and red pepper flakes as garnish.
Source: PB & Kelly
Originally this recipe was prepared as an appetizer, cooked in mini-muffin pans for perfect bite-sized portions. They looked so delicious I decided to promote them to ‘entree’. I wish I had a green pepper when I made this, would’ve been a great addition! But as it stands it was still scrumptious. Also, like any pizza, prepare with any other “toppings” mixed in that you crave.
True to form, Brent only needed ranch dressing to complete his meal.
1/2 lb Italian sausage
1-8 oz block mozzarella cheese
1-6 oz can tomato paste
1/4 cup water
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1-1/2 cup flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning
4 Tbsp butter
3 – 4 Tbsp cold water
1/2 cup Italian five cheese blend, shredded
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Brown Italian sausage in a small skillet.
- While the meat cooks, cut block of mozzarella into small cubes.
- Stir together the tomato paste, olive oil, 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning, garlic powder, 1 tsp salt, and crushed red pepper flakes.
- Drain the meat and stir into tomato mixture. Stir in the mozzarella. Cover and refrigerate until assembling.
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, 2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp Italian seasoning. Cut in butter with a pastry cutter until crumbly.
- Slowly add water and stir. If necessary, form the dough into a ball with your hands, adding a bit more water if needed.
- Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to fit a tart pan. Place and press into the pan and work halfway up the sides to form a rim.
- Spread the filling into the tart evenly. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes (top with shredded cheese for the last 10 minutes); until cheese is golden and thoroughly melted and crust is slightly golden brown.
Source: Adapted from Cooking During Stolen Moments