No big deal, it has been 5 years since my last post, lets just pick up where we left off.
Holy Mother of all things good to cook. I hit one out of the park. I thought this would be good, I had no idea it would GREAT, like no leftovers great. (I would have doubled had I known)One of my very favorite things to do is purchase quick-sale or reduced meats. I know there are a few categories of people that find that practice abhorrent. I, on the other hand, have cooked many meals that I could not otherwise afford to eat using this method, and I can add other fun stuff when I get a deal on things I purchase all the time. We have never gotten sick, and I always cook by the date it recommends, even if that means cooking it that night. Germaphobe category people, avoid this practice.
The real reason I like it? The thrill of the hunt. I then go home, look up dozens of recipes online and proceed to mash them up into what I think is the best flavor combination and based on my ingredient list. What to look for when surfing? Recipes with good bones. Uber Meal Planners, another category of people, this practice may not be for you.
If the meat is super weird, and you are a HEB zealot like me, ask the chefs at the Cooking Connection. They always have great ideas and good tips.
Side note: I do have my limits to "super weird". Yesterday took a big, I mean BIG step away when the reduced for quick sale item was sweetbreads..
So, this brings us to dinner tonight. I bought Italian turkey sausage links for $2 yesterday at HEB. All HEB turkey sausage made in house is MSG-free. After much perusal, and very little options online, this is what I came up with.
Gluten Free Turkey Sausage Pasta
1 pound of Italian Turkey Sausage Links
3 Cups of Chicken Broth
1 Red Bell Pepper cut as strips
1/2 red onion cut as strips
4 cloves garlic crushed
3 heads of Broccoli, cut florets from stem
1 can of Fire Roasted Tomatoes
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried basil (Fresh would be AMAZING too)
salt and pepper to taste, be generous.
1 box of gluten free pasta. (shells, rigatoni, macaroni shells) cooked to instructions.
1 cup Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette (Recipe to follow)
Place sausage in crock pot on high. Add enough chicken broth to cover. Slow cook for 4 hours. You can do this step ahead if needed.
When 4 hours are up, remove sausage and cut into rings. Reserve chicken broth for later use. Heat dutch oven with a few tablespoons of olive oil, when oil is hot add sausage rings. Cook until they are a nice crispy brown. Remove and set aside. You can eliminate step one and two and put sausage on grill. The added steps adds juice to the meat and insures no drying.
Add a bit more oil and add onion, garlic and red bell. Cook at a medium heat for about 15 minutes. You want them to cook slow and long so they are soft.
Add broccoli and turn up the heat. After you have sauteed the broccoli for a few minutes, 3-5, add a few tablespoons of chicken broth and a few tablespoons of Vinaigrette. Cover and let steam for 3-5 minutes. Remove and set aside.
Add canned tomatoes, oregano and basil. Deglaze pan and let simmer for 3 min. Add reserved veggies, meat and 1/2 cup of Vinaigrette. Toss and heat, add cooked noodles and toss more. Add more Vinaigrette if you feel you do not have enough sauce.
Yummy, cheap, gluten- and dairy-free, definitely NOT flavor free
Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup Cooking Sherry
1/2 cup honey
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
Juice of 1 lime
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoons smoked paprika
3 cloves garlic
1/2 finely chopped red onion
1 teaspoon oregano
1 pinch white sugar (optional)
1/2 cup olive oil
Blend the red wine vinegar, honey, mustard, lime juice, pepper, salt, paprika, garlic, onion, oregano, and sugar together in a blender until thoroughly mixed. Drizzle the olive oil into the mixture while blending on low. Chill at least 1 hour before serving
*This makes TONS. Use as marinade for fish, shrimp chicken or beef. Or, novel idea, salad dressing.