Monday, November 18, 2013


In true chilly weather spirit, I made a few comforting dishes this weekend. And Vance worked almost all weekend - so I cooked, and cooked some more, and then a little bit more.
sausage & spinach ziti
10 ounces cooked rigatoni or penne
6 ounces baby spinach
6 ounces mozzarella, shredded
4-5 links Italian sausage (hot or mild), removed from casings
1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
1 small onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
28 ounces chopped tomatoes with juice
1/4 cup pesto
bit of EVOO
In a heavy bottom pan, heat EVOO and sauté onion and garlic for about 5 minutes, add sausage - breaking it apart with a wooden spoon. Cook sausage for about 10 minutes then add tomatoes and juice and pesto - mix well. 
Season with salt and pepper. 
In a large bowl, toss pasta, about half to three quarters of both cheese and spinach. Add tomato-sausage mixture and mix with pasta. Pour into a prepared baking dish and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes at 375 degrees. 
sausage, kale & white bean soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 ounces pancetta, small cubes
small onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
4-5 fresh thyme sprigs, whole
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 head Swiss chard, (about 1 pound) trimmed, washed, and coarsely chopped
2-15 ounce cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes w/basil, garlic and oregano (with juice, preferably no salt added)
5 cups chicken or pork broth
3 sausages, pan-cooked or grilled and chopped – I used Bratwursts and roasted 
them for about 10 minutes at 475 degrees
 S&P to taste
Heat EVOO and sauté pancetta for about 8 minutes until browned - remove from the pan, reserving fat in pan. Add onion, garlic, thyme and red pepper - sauté for about 10 minutes. When onion is translucent, add Swiss chard, tomatoes, beans, broth and sliced sausages. Bring to a light boil and then reduce to simmer for about 25 minutes.  
Stir in pancetta and S&P. 
These dishes are heart and pair very well with a simple salad and a crusty roll.
Enjoy your snausage!

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