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Entries in spicy sausage (4)

7:00AM

Spinach & Sun Dried Tomato Frittata

Breakfast and brunch around here are a big deal, especially on the weekends. During the week Nick usually scoots out the door with a mug of coffee and a lunchbox full of leftovers, but Saturday and Sunday are a different story. Usually Nick waits until mid morning to tell me he is hungry, which is usually his way of suggesting some sort of delicious brunch. Well, I usually don’t put up too much of a fight. He works hard all week and he happens to love breakfast. Sometimes I poke fun at him, but it is all in good humor.

Recently, we had some spinach to use up {we foolishly purchased two HUGE bags full of spinach and then ended up traveling around a bunch for a month.} We hate wasting food, so we did not want the spinach to spoil. Therefore, I knew it had to be put to good use for breakfast. Take a look.

 

Nutritional Information
Servings: 8
Serving Size: 1 piece
Calories: 94.8
Fat: 6.3 g
Carbohydrates: 1.5 g
Fiber: .18 g
Protein: 7.8 g
Points+: 2

Ingredients:

Recipe Adapted from In the Kitchen with David, Comfort Foods that take you Home, p. 49

  • Vegetable Oil Spray
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 ½ spicy sausage links
  • 1 ounce sun dried tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped spinach
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese

 

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  • Spray an 8-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet with the vegetable oil spray
  • Heat the skillet over medium heat
  • While the skillet is heating up, whisk the eggs in a medium bowl until frothy
  • In a blender, add the tomatoes, basil, garlic, spicy sausage, salt and pepper and pulse until everything is small diced
  • Add the sausage and tomato mixture to the eggs and combine
  • Add the egg mixture to the skillet and cook without stirring until the eggs begin to set on the bottom, about 1 minute
  • Top with the spinach leaves
  • Carefully loosen the edges with a heat-proof spatula ad continue to cook for another 1 or 2 minutes
  • Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for 5 to 7 minutes, until the frittata is puffed and golden brown
  • Place a plate large enough to hold the frittata bottom side up on top of the skillet
  • With the plate and skillet firmly pressed together, invert the frittata onto the late
  • Sprinkle with the Parmesan
  • Slice into thin wedges and serve
  • Enjoy!! 

 

 

 

11:06AM

Bolognese Sauce

I’m sitting in my mom’s house alone with two dogs. Somehow I did not expect my visit to Williamsport to be a direct reflection of my life in Northern Virginia. It is kind of funny, actually. It is not like I’ve been officially abandoned or anything; my mom had an appointment this morning and Nick took the opportunity to go get his haircut. I guess it’s the perfect opportunity to write a blog post.

This week is going to be filled with delicious food and fun. I’ve already got one day of Hawaiian Ice and pizza in my system. Today is going to be filled with gyros, cactus taters and more Hawaiian ice! I love the Lycoming County Fair. I’ve gone every single year of my life as far as I can remember, so it was awesome that Nick took a few days off work!

However, before we left Nick and I tried to keep a relatively healthy diet so that we could enjoy some over the top fair food. Take a look at this delicious Bolognese Sauce! It is INCREDIBLE!

Nutritional Information
Servings: about 12
Calories: 203.8
Fat: 12.6 g
Carbohydrates: 7.4 g
Fiber: 2 g
Protein: 12.7 g
Points+: 5

Ingredients:

Recipe Inspired by Emeril Lagasse & Ree Drummond 

Lots of Pam

1 pound spicy sausage, cooked and crumbled

½ pound lean ground beef, cooked

1 small to medium onion, small dice

1 cup carrots, small dice

¾ cup celery, small dice

2 tablespoons Dried Oregano

2 Tablespoons Dried Basil Flakes

1 {6 ounce} can Tomato Paste

5 to 6 cloves garlic, pressed

4 {14.5 ounce} cans Diced Tomatoes

½ cup chicken stock

1 cup whole milk

Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Heat Pam in large skillet over medium heat. Add grated carrots and onions and cook for several minutes, until the onions are translucent.

Add the ground beef and spicy sausage to the skillet

Cook until the beef and sausage is warmed through again

Add the oregano and basil and mix thoroughly

Add the tomato paste and let it heat through

Then add the garlic and stir well to combine

Add canned tomatoes mix thoroughly and add the milk, salt and pepper

Allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes, and up to 2 hours

Make sure you stir periodically

Serve with pasta and enjoy!

This makes a ton of servings. Nick and I actually froze a couple of bags because it was just too much for us. I’m looking forward to a cool evening to whip it out and serve it up with some grilled baguette and pasta. Give it a try & enjoy!!

xoxoxo Mel 

11:29AM

Baked Spaghetti

Happy Thursday Morning Foodies! It’s another gloomy day here in NoVa, which is okay with me. I have really been enjoying the rainy days here. However, rainy days in other parts of the country are not as easy going as my rainy days. For instance, my lovely hometown in central Pennsylvania currently is under water. I cannot believe it. Well, I can believe it because so much of the area is a flood zone.

Let me paint a picture. Williamsport is located in a valley, between beautiful, luscious mountains. It’s such a fun experience growing up there, especially with the changing of the seasons and snowy days. Imagine being surrounded by beautiful and deep reds, oranges and yellows in the Fall and in the Spring when hints of green start to emerge around you with chirping birds and skinny squirrels. Imagine a town in a snow globe, being covered in beautiful flakes of snow each year; where all of the bare tree branches are coated in a glistening soft white powder. It’s beautiful. It’s fun to look at from the comfort of your home with a hot chocolate in your hand. It’s fun to go out and roll around in, sled ride down the dike and run through the closed streets on days off from work and school.

Dike? Oh yes. Did I forget to mention that? Our little city has a windy, rapid ‘stream’ flowing through it; the stream is otherwise known as the Susquehanna River. Normally it is impotent. In fact, during the Spring & Summer season many people are ‘river rats.’ They go down each weekend with a camper, firewood, marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate to set up shop. It’s a weekend getaway and everybody enjoys some loud music, adult beverages and a swim in the river.

That was not me. My mom did not want me to spend too much time at the river because she had this fear I was swimming in not-so-nice things and, let’s not forget, I was her only child who was allergic to everything and asthmatic; she had this reoccurring fear that something bad was going to happen to me and the adults around would not know what to do. She still has that fear. I will tell you it has not become less annoying over the years.

I mean, for instance, think about a college kid walking through airport security in CHINA and having a bunch of medication and a nebulizer - a machine to treat an asthma attack. Yep, that was me and all because my mom was too overprotective. I spoke minimal Chinese and it was a year after September 11, 2001. I’m surprised I was not detained in a Chinese prison as a suspected criminal.

Anyway, back to my hometown. That harmless river comes alive with large amounts of rain or melting snow. And I mean it COMES ALIVE. Currently, it is doing a lot of harm to my proud little baseball town. It is flooding streets and homes, businesses and parks. The monstrous Susquehanna River is wreaking havoc on Williamsport, Pennsylvania and the surrounding towns. It happens, I guess. I mean, it is a fact of life when living in low lying areas surrounded by mountains and a river. All of the rain is sweeping down the mountains into the towns below while, simultaneously, the river is rising due to large amounts of localized rain. It’s a horrible situation for everybody involved.

I am sending my thoughts and prayers to everybody being affected – my old friends, Mom & church family there. I hope you all are safe and recovery is swift. From my lips to Gods ears.

How does this have anything to do with food? It’s all pretty depressing, right? Well, I will tell you how it all relates. A lot of people are home from work and school today; effectively stuck inside. After a day of playing video games, watching movies, drinking tea and reading books, dinner is going to come knocking. And, today, I have the BEST dinner for your family. I mean it. It’s a traditional meal made a slightly different way and you can easily add food accessories to round out the meal. Are you ready for it?! Today I give you Baked Spaghetti!

I ate a lot of spaghetti growing up and now, as an adult, I am pretty sick of it. It has never been my favorite meal and I do not think it ever will be. However, I wanted to give this baked Spaghetti phenomenon a try and I am sure glad I did! This was delicious and super easy to make.

Nutritional Info:
Serving(s): 6; Serving size 1 square
Calories: 323
Fat: 21g
Carbohydrates: 33g
Fiber: 3.6g
Protein: 18g
Points+: 10 per serving

Here is what you will need:

  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 spicy sausage links, cooked & crumbled
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes with basil and garlic
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ onion, small diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • ½ tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 small bay leaves
  • ½ pasta sauce [optional]
  • 3 ounces angel hair pasta
  • 1 cup cheese, shredded
  • 2 ounces crumbled Feta cheese

Directions:

  • In a medium sauce pan combine the tomatoes, tomato sauce, and water over medium heat and allow to simmer

  • Meanwhile, in a small skillet over medium heat add the olive oil. When the oil is heated, add the diced onions and garlic to the skillet and allow to cook until translucent.

  • When the onions & garlic are cooked through, add them to the tomato sauce
  • Add the Italian seasoning, Cajun seasoning, sugar, salt, pepper, dried basil, oregano and incorporate fully. Add the bay leaves, reduce to low heat, and cover for about an hour, stirring occasionally.  
  • *If you want to use the spaghetti sauce add it now!
  • After about 30 minutes, add the crumbled sausage to the pasta sauce and stir to incorporate fully

  • After about an hour, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
  • Cook the pasta according to the packaged directions
  • When the pasta is fully cooked, drain and remove to a bowl. Mix in the feta cheese.

  • Grease a baking dish and add a ladle full of sauce to the bottom of the dish
  • Add a layer of pasta and cover with some pasta sauce to cover fully; repeat the layers ending with sauce

  • Top with the cup of shredded cheese

 

  • Bake for 30 to 40 minutes and serve!

 

As much as I fight against making spaghetti, I LOVED this dish. It is packed full of flavor with a hint of spice, which is totally what Nick and I love about most dishes. One of the best parts of this meal is adding food accessories side dishes. Imagine a nice salad, a piece of garlic bread or large meatballs towering around a piece of this baked spaghetti!

I hope you all give this a try!

Until Next Time,

Happy Baking Spaghetti