Sunday, October 30, 2011
In honor of tailgating season, I thought I would try out a traditional football season recipe, Beer-braised Italian sausage with onions and peppers. This recipe was a total hit and one that I will use for years to come. This hearty dish can be eaten on an Italian roll, sliced up over buttered egg noodles, or just as is, with plenty of peppers and onions on top.
One of the great aspects of this recipe is that it can be made all in one large pot. The cooking of the sausages in beer first, leaves drippings which are deglazed with a little more beer. The drippings are full of flavor, so naturally cooking the onions and peppers in the same pot is one of the reasons this is so tasty.
Also included this week is a recipe for my favorite part of any meal, dessert! Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are the perfect tailgating treat or Halloween dessert. I have been making these for a few years now, and people absolutely love them. The pumpkin gives these cookies such a moist texture and the dark chocolate-pumpkin combination is a match made in heaven. This recipe is already in my blog, here is the link: Pumpkin Choco Chip Cookies
Give these a try for your next weekend meal, you will not be disappointed!
Italian Sausage w/Onions & Peppers
• 6 Italian sausages
• 1 bottle of beer
• 2 onions, sliced
• 2 bell peppers, sliced
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 Tbls tomato paste
• ¾ tsp salt
• ½ tsp pepper
• ¾ tsp oregano
• red pepper flake, to taste
1. Place sausages in a large skillet or Dutch oven along with half of the beer over
medium heat, covered for 5 minutes
2. Uncover and allow sausages to cook, turning often, until beer has evaporated and
sausage has browned
3. Remove sausages from pot, then deglaze with the rest of the beer, reduce by half;
then add in onions, peppers, garlic, salt, pepper and spices
4. Cook veggies covered, stirring occasionally until veggies begin to soften;
then add in tomato paste, cover, and continue cooking until veggies are fully
cooked and soft
5. Place sausages back into pot with veggies to heat through, serve on Italian rolls if
Posted by Cookin' Up Dreams at 8:24 AM
Sunday, October 16, 2011
One of my favorite parts of fall is the food that comes along with it. As we head into the cooler months, the desire for slow-cooked, comfort food seems almost unbearable. I absolutely love that first night of spicy chili on the stove top, and I definitely can’t resist anything with apple, pumpkin or pecans. One of the myths about comfort food is it has to be bad for you, and it takes all day to prepare.
Don’t get me wrong, I love grandma’s gooey pecan pie just as much as the next Southerner, and a slow-cooked stew certainly is something to be savored.
However, there are ways to make food that’s comforting and nutritious that doesn’t take all day.
It’s all about textures, colors and flavors. Paying attention to the appearance and contrast of colors and textures on your plate is actually important, since we really eat with our eyes first.
This Pecan Crusted Chicken with Spiced Orange Butter gets a great crunch and flavor from the pecans and richness from the spiced butter. It is easy enough for a midweek meal, but fancy enough for entertaining on the weekend. The chicken is also baked instead of pan fried, so you won’t have to stand over the stove all night. The spiced butter makes for a nice finish to this dish, but you could always leave it out to make it lighter or on a busy night.
Serve it up with maple-roasted acorn squash, and you may just have a new favorite family meal. Acorn squash is a beautiful, tasty dish that is also relatively inexpensive. I can’t think of a simpler yet satisfying fall-themed side dish.
Roasted Acorn SquashIngredients:
2 acorn squash, seeded and quartered
2 Tbls olive oil
1 Tbls butter, melted
¼ cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Arrange quartered squash cut side up in a baking dish
3. Brush with oil and butter, sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, salt and pepper
4. Bake for 25-30 minutes until flesh is tender and slightly browned
Pecan Crusted Chicken with Spiced Orange Butter
6 chicken cutlets
2 cups pecans, very finely chopped with a food processor if available
A few dashes of hot sauce
1 cup buttermilk (You can use 1 Tbls of white vinegar or lemon juice in cup of milk as a substitute)
1 tsp salt
¾ tsp pepper
3 Tbls butter, at room temperature
1 Tbls orange zest
1 tsp chili powder
¼ tsp cinnamon
Pinch of salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and place a cooling rack on top of a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray
2. Combine buttermilk and hot sauce then place chicken in the mixture
3. Put chopped pecans in a shallow dish with salt and pepper
4. Place chicken in pecans and slightly press down to help pecans stick
5. Place each coated chicken cutlet in baking wrack and lightly spray the tops with cooking spray
6. Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until chicken is cooked through
7. While chicken bakes, combine butter, orange zest, chili powder, cinnamon, and pinch of salt and pepper until thoroughly combined
8. Once chicken is done, place a small spoon full of butter on top of each hot