Tag Archives: sausage

Sausage, spinach, and artichokes

When we moved into our house in Bakersfield we got this little welcome package from the builder that included a copy of Food & Wine’s Best of the Best Vol. 9 which is basically a compilation of recipes from 25 cookbooks they thought were the best. One of the books featured is Tyler Florence’s Eat This Book . The way he describes every recipe makes you want to cook. It makes it seems so interesting and fun.

When trying to come up with a not so ordinary use for our CSA box artichokes I came across his recipe for Artichokes with Lemon Sausage and Sage (side note: who needs recipe books anymore when all the chef recipes are on the Food Network website?). This has become one of my favorite recipes so much so that I don’t even really have to look at the recipe to make it, but just in case I do, I even have the page number in the book that it is on memorized (that’s p. 97 for any of you who are curious).

I’ve also gotten comfortable enough with it to tweak it to our likes/dislikes and what we have available or need to use in our CSA box. Last week I made a version using my homemade chicken stock, CSA spinach and artichokes.

For the artichokes:
-1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley
-4 garlic cloves, pressed
-2 bay leaves
-1/4 cup white wine
-1/2 lemon cut into paper-thin slices
-salt and pepper to taste
-4 baby artichokes
-1 cup chicken stock

For the rest of the dish:
-olive oil
-1 package sweet Italian pork sausage
-1 bunch spinach, rinsed and chopped
-1/2 onion, diced
-2 cloves garlic, pressed
-1/2 lemon, cut into paper-thin slices
-1/2 cup chicken stock

Place parsley, garlic, bay leaves, wine, lemon slices, salt, pepper, and chicken stock in pot and bring to a boil. Rinse artichokes and trim them. Place artichokes in pot, cover and reduce heat to simmer for about 20 minutes.

Heat olive oil in pan and then add sausages. Cook until brown on both sides and done through. Remove sausages from pan and keep warm. Add more olive oil, onion and garlic and cook until onion is translucent. Stir in chicken stock, spinach and lemon slices. Add artichokes and sausage to the pan to warm and bring all the flavors together. Dish is ready when spinach is slightly wilted.


Filed under Gourmet Lisa

Best of Both Worlds Lasagne

If you want to be a vegetarian, you kind of have to like vegetables. Like a lot. Obviously.

As many of you know, I have been one off and on over the years. So I definitely like my veggies. When it comes to many dishes, I usually like the version with extra veggies over the meat version.

My husband on the other hand is an, “eater of meat,” as he puts it. Definitely a carnivore. Tends to complain when I make a meal that doesn’t include meat. If he doesn’t complain, he doesn’t go back for seconds or chow down on the leftovers the next day, for sure.

Since I do like meat in addition to my veggies, I sometimes am torn between which version of stuff I should partake in. You know the situation… you’re at an event with lots of people and lots of food and there is a veggie pizza and a meat pizza, veggie/cheese enchiladas and chicken enchiladas, etc. Often I don’t want to choose so I end up eating way too much because I have to have a little of both.

Well, that is where this lasagne recipe comes in. It combines the two so you don’t have to choose! It definitely isn’t really gourmet either because I used preshredded cheese and store-bought sauce as a base. You could fancy it up and make everything from complete scratch if you wanted to though.

Best of Both Worlds Lasagne

-1 jar Pomodoro Rustico sauce from TJs
-2 sweet Italian sausage links
-1 cup bell peppers, chopped
-1 cup frozen artichoke hearts, chopped
-1 cup carrots, chopped
-2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
-1 box lasagne noodles
-1 bag shredded mozarella
-some shredded Parmesan

Preheat oven to 375.

Cook sausage links over medium heat until browned and cooked through. Remove from pan and chop into small pieces.

Add carrots to pan and cook until softened. Return sausage to the pan and add sauce, artichoke hearts, and bell pepper. Cook until warmed through.

Any Italian will tell you that you have to taste the sauce during the cooking process. It really is just a must. Bean was hanging out with me in the kitchen while I was cooking and in an effort to make her feel involved, I let her taste test the sauce. Doing this with her brought back so many memories as a kid getting to taste test the sauce with my dad.

She’s saying “hot”.


Next you’ll want to layer your ingredients in a big casserole dish.

Sauce on the bottom so that the pasta doesn’t stick…

…uncooked pasta┬ánext…

…another layer of sauce and then some of your spinach leaves…


…and on and on until you get a full pan like this.

Bake covered for 40 minutes and then uncovered for another 5 minutes.

Remove from oven and enjoy.

If I ever want to become a serious food/recipe blogger, I’m going to have to get better at plating my food.


Filed under Gourmet Lisa

Sausage and Corn Chowder

This is one of my favorite soups right now and perfect for a cold, rainy day like today.

I picked some of the vegetables used in this recipe up at the farmer’s market this morning. When I left my house it seemed like the storm was finally subsiding with little peeks of blue skies and sunshine. Boy was I wrong. It started sprinkling when I arrived with Sprout and was in a full on downpour complete with lightning flashes and peals of thunder.

I didn’t have my front-pack all weather cover so Sprout was getting soaked. One of the vendors let me borrow an umbrella so I bought some pita bread from him. At one booth whenever the thunder boomed, the lady selling apples to me would put her hand on her chest and freak out. We don’t get much weather in Southern California so I guess some people are really thrown off by it.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this hearty soup (preferrably in a cozy home with a sweater and some fluffy slippers on or maybe the fireplace going).

-1 package sweet Italian sausage
-1 bag frozen corn (I used the roasted kind they have at TJs because that’s what we had in our freezer, but regular corn is just as good)
-2 red potatoes, chopped
-2 medium carrots, chopped
-1 red bell pepper, chopped
-1 onion, chopped
-2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
-1 box chicken broth
-1 bay leaf
-1 cup milk
-1 tbsp olive oil
-2 tbsp corn starch
-salt and pepper to taste

Cut sausage links into bite-sized pieces. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat and add sausage to brown. Remove sausage from pan and place in soup pot.

Add onion, garlic, carrots, and potatoes to pan that sausage was just cooked in. Cook vegetables until tender. Add to soup pot.

Add bell pepper, corn, chicken broth, bay leaf, to soup pot. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until vegetables are tender. Remove 1/2 cup broth and mix with corn starch until smooth. Return to pot and cook until thickened. Stir in milk. Remove from heat.

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Filed under Gourmet Lisa