Easy Sausage, Potatoes, Peppers and Onions

It’s back to school and here’s an easy recipe that will be a go to for you and your family. I love making this for my family because it’s quick, healthy and fills their bellies. When school starts back we all are in the grind of life, adjusting to a new school year schedule. There are footballs practices, ballet rehearsals, music recitals and a thousand other things we have to focus on, so let dinner be one thing, you pour Love into, but not lots of time. But hey it can taste like it. 😉

Note: A short cut here for this recipe is to precooked the potatoes the night before or use frozen potatoes. I prefer to precook fresh potatoes the night before, fresh ingredients really does make a difference. If you do, cook them until they are mostly tender and not mushy. They will cook later in the recipe.

INGREDIENTS:

2 Tablespoons olive oil

4-5 Sweet Italian Turkey sausage links

10 medium red potatoes, cut in half

1 large yellow onion, sliced

3 bell peppers, any color, sliced into strips. I used what was in the fridge.

2 garlic cloves, minced

3/4 cup Low Sodium Vegetable Broth

1 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Sea salt to taste

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

Add the red potatoes to a pot of boiling water, cook until mostly tender, they will cook in the saucepan with the sausage and peppers later. Drain and set aside.

*If you are using precooked potatoes or frozen, skip this step above.

While the potatoes are cooking, Poke each sausage a few times with a paring knife or fork (this helps release steam as they cook).

In a large skillet with a lid, heat olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add sausages and brown gently and slowly. Cook for 3- 5 minutes, turning occasionally to gently brown on all sides. (They should not be fully cooked.) Once browned, remove sausages to a plate. Set aside.

Increase heat to medium high. Add onion and pepper slices. Toss to coat in oil and sear vegetables until slightly blackened, stirring often. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute.

Add vegetable broth, to deglaze the saucepan, scraping bottom of pan with a wooden spoon to release bits. Simmer the vegetable broth until reduced by half.

Add Italian seasoning. Stir well to combine. Add sausages and the potatoes. Add salt to taste and gently toss. Bring to a simmer then reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer until potatoes and peppers are soft and sausages are cooked.

Broccoli and Parmesan Cheese with a twist

This is a simple recipe, but it has a twist. Instead of using water to steam the broccoli you use vegetable broth. It gives the broccoli so much flavor. In a sauce pan add a bit of oil on heat the stove on medium heat . Toss in 2 cups of broccoli florets. Stir the florets around in the pan to help coat them with the oil. Add in a 1/3 cup of low sodium vegetable. Place the lid on top of the pan and allow to steam until the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and add parmesan cheese on top, place lid back onto the pan to help the cheese melt. Serve immediately. Enjoy

Roasted Butternut Squash, Brussels Sprouts, Purple Sweet Potatoes in red wine with toasted quinoa and almonds

Thanksgiving is next month and I am always thinking about what will I do differently this year. Then I remember that I go out of town each year and visit my family, so it’s more like what will I do differently for Christmas this year. Lately, for the past 3 years I have been doing a French country inspired Christmas dinner, but I want to switch it up a bit. I want to do more of a vegetarian theme dinner. I know my boys, they will not have that at all, but I will incorporate more plant-based recipes this year. I always add a new vegetarian plant based recipe each year and less meat, getting closer and closer to my vegetarian Christmas dinner, more and more. LOL.

This particular dish came about when I was thinking of my past made coursed for Christmas, usually I like to do a Beef Bourguignon, but if I could do a take on that recipe using vegetables.  Now this recipe is not like Beef Bourguignon, at all but the richness of it from the wine and the balsamic vinegar, reminded me so much of the dish. It could easily be a main course for vegan or vegetarian table.

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Roasted Butternut Squash, Brussels Sprouts, Purple Sweet Potato in red wine 

I toasted quinoa and almonds to add some protein and texture, some cranberries and lemon zest and you have a deliciously decadent, rich, and refreshing dish for Thanksgiving or any time of the Fall and Winter season.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much I did today. You can add walnuts, or any other nut your prefer, instead of almonds. I had almonds and hand and I believe in using what you have.

Enjoy and Remember to Set the Table with Love.

 

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Roasted Butternut Squash, Brussels Sprouts, Purple Sweet Potato in red with toasted quinoa and almonds

Ingredients:

1 medium butter squash, peeled and chopped into 1-2 inch pieces

1 pound brussels sprouts, peeled and halved

3 medium purple sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1-2 inch pieces

2 tbsp olive oil

1/4 cup chopped onions

2 garlic cloves, peeled and diced

1 tbsp sea salt, or taste

1  1/2 tbsp Harissa seasoning, adjust to your heat preference

1 tbsp brown sugar

1 1/2 cup red wine

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

Garnish: Toasted Quinoa, Toasted Nuts, Cranberries and Lemon Zest

 

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Roasted Butternut Squash, Brussels Sprouts, Purple Sweet Potato in red wine with toasted quinoa and almonds

Directions:

Preheat the oven 375.

In a large cast iron skillet on medium high heat, add the oil and chopped veggies and sea salt. Cook for about 10 minutes. Add the onions and garlic. Add the Harissa and brown sugar Stir and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the wine and vinegar.

Place the cast iron skillet in the oven and roast for 30-35 minutes until the vegetables are brown and a fork can go through the vegetables easily.

Toasted Quinoa recipe: Quinoa two ways ~ Toasted and Roasted

For Toasted Nuts,  just add nuts in a non stick pan on medium heat and allow to toast until you can smell the nuts aroma, remove from heat, be careful not to burn them.

Once cooked add the vegetable in a beautiful bowl top with toasted quinoa, nuts, cranberries and lemon zest.

 

 

 

Buffalo Sauce Cauliflower Pizza with a Vegan Ranch White Bean Spread

Okay who doesn’t like pizza?  Who doesn’t like spicy buffalo sauce? Okay who doesn’t like Cauliflower? Alright put your hands down. LOL. 🙂  I love cauliflower. So, I was craving something spicy and pizza at the same time. I have heard of Buffalo wing pizza before, I think on television or saw it on a menu once, but buffalo sauce pizza. Hmm… How can we go Vegan or Vegetarian on this one?

I went Gluten Free Vegan on this recipe. It was super simple.  Now this recipe maybe spicy or not for you, so go with the level your GUT can take.

I used a pre made Gluten Free Vegan Pizza crust, that I found at Sprouts. This pizza crust  is in the section of their pre made meals and cheeses. I can not remember the name, but it is the only Gluten Free Vegan pizza-crust in that section.

Well here is what you will need and maybe a glass of water. Nah… That would not help anyway, according to food scientist, maybe some coconut water?

Enjoy!

Buffalo Sauce Cauliflower Pizza with a vegan Ranch Style White Bean Spread

Buffalo Sauce Cauliflower Pizza with a Ranch styled White Bean Spread

1 -2  pre made small pizza crust, drizzled with a little olive oil

2 Tbsp. olive oil 

2 cups cauliflower, chopped into florets ( you may have some left over, but the pizza crust come in a package of two)

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. paprika

1 /2 cup Louisiana  hot sauce or more.

Preheat the oven to 425°F.
In a large sauce pan.  Add the olive oil on medium low heat. Add the cauliflower and sauté until slightly tender, about 2-3 minutes. *NOTE: It will have to bake in the oven and that cooking time will get the cauliflower more tender.

Add the paprika and garlic on to the cauliflower and stir until all of the spices cover the veggies. Lower the heat and add the 1/2 cup of Louisiana hot sauce.  Stir the hot sauce into with the veggies, so it will coat the cauliflower completely. Here’s where your taste buds must take over. Give it a taste. See if you need more heat. Add more hot sauce according to your preference. *NOTE: If it’s too spicy, add just a little water at a time to decrease the heat. Keep the heat on, so the water can cook out of the cauliflower, if you decided to add it.

Once the cauliflower is drenched in hot sauce remove it from the heat, set aside.

Next:

Vegan  Ranch style White Bean Spread

1 can organic white beans

1 tbsp olive oil and 1/2 tsp  sea salt to seasoning the beans.

For Vegan Ranch flavoring

2 tbsp almond milk or coconut milk, unsweetened and original flavor
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tbsp  apple cider vinegar, or lemon juice
1/4 tsp dried dill

Drain and Rinse the beans. Add the olive oil to a sauce pan. Add the beans and sea salt. Cook on a medium heat for 5 minutes. Stirring the beans. Remove from the heat, allow to cool down. Once cooled.  Add the beans to your food processor with all the rest of the ingredients, until very smooth. Taste to see if you need more salt or black pepper, you can also use cayenne pepper.

Next, add the bean spread to the lightly oiled pizza crust, spread it out evenly onto the crust.  Secondly, add the buffalo sauced cauliflower to the top of the white bean spread.  Nestling the cauliflower into the spread. Bake in the oven on 425 for as long as your pizza crust directions has instructed you. I cooked mines for 15 minutes. It is best to buy a pre made crust, because your toppings are already cooked.  If your pizza crust is frozen, allow it to thaw out before adding ingredients, so your ingredients do not burn before your crust is done.

I hope you enjoy this recipe and hey get adventurous and add your own twist to it. Try a Tuscan Pizza with veggies and a sundries tomato bean spread.

Set the Table with Love. 🙂

No oil baked Sweet Chipotle Sweet Potato Fries

This post is inspired by my Instagram friend Cristian Peters. She has this amazing blog called Simply Clean Cooking. Please go and check out her delicious blog. She is one of my inspiration to eating more Vegan based foods. Yesterday, she posted these amazing No oil/ Baked Crispy French fries. I guess the Irish makes me crave potatoes all the time. I decided today to try this technique out on my family. I know my husband and son, so I have to do a test run first. They have not converted over to a plant based diet completely, yet. So these fries have to be delicious!!

No oil/ Baked Sweet Chipotle Sweet Potato Fries
No oil/ Baked Sweet Chipotle Sweet Potato Fries

Here’s what I did. 

Preheat the oven to 415.

I took one medium sweet potato. Peeled it and cut it into 1/4-1/2 inch thick fries.

I rinsed the fries and patted them dry with a towel. Sweet potatoes are a lot drier than regular white potatoes, so rinsing them I found helps the baking process. Science. 🙂

I put parchment paper onto a cookie sheet and placed the fries on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Separate them, so they can crisp up.

Bake for 12-17 minutes. It took my fries about 15 minutes to cook. If you can put a fork through them, they are ready. Once they are fork tender.  I turned on the broiler and cooked them for another 2-3 minutes.  DO NOT PUT THEM UNDER THE BROILER. YOU WILL CATCH THE PARCHMENT PAPER ON FIRE. Keep them in the oven.

This really crisped them up. WATCH THE BOILER, SO THEY DO NOT BURN. SWEET POTATOES HAVE LOTS OF SUGAR IN THEM. 🙂

Pull them out once they are brown enough. I sprinkled a nice Sweet Chipotle Rub on them while they were still hot.

Here’s the rub:

1/4 tsp. paprika, chili powder, garlic powder

1/8 tsp. sea salt

pinch of organic cane sugar.

Mix ingredients together and sprinkle over hot fries. Eat and Enjoy.

Thanks for the inspiration!! Cristian Peters!

Always , Set the Table with Love.

Homemade Flatbread, Roti, Tortilla? Hmm.. You decide

Other day my family wanted to eat cajun flatbread pizza. It is really yummy. It’s basically sautéed onions, cajun sausage, spicy barbecue sauce and sharp cheddar cheese. Unfortunately, we did not have any flat bread. My hubby was about to go and run out to the store and buy some, when I yelled, Stop!!! As though he was committing a crime. I will make the flatbread from scratch in my Super “Mama” Hero voice. LOL.

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Organic Flatbread

Very easy! The funny thing is when I posted it on Facebook my friend from India asked me, “Is that Roti.” NO! It is Flat bread. My friend who is spanish asked me, “Is that Tortilla?” NO! It is flatbread. But hey it can be whatever you like.

Here is the recipe. This is a no yeast flatbread.

Enjoy! Remember to Set the Table with Love.

Italian Herb infused Flat bread

  • 1 3/4 cup  organic all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup vegetable shortening
  • 3 cloves, crushed garlic, Finely crushed
  • 1/2 tbsp Italian herb blend ( I used a blend with a grinder, to get bigger chunks of herbs)
  • 1/2 cup hot water
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See those bubbles.

Preparation:

Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder to a mixing bowl. Add the shortening and garlic, and work into the flour with a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.Pour in the hot water and stir with a fork to combine. Pour mixture on a lightly floured surface and knead with your hands for about 3 minutes to form a smooth, soft dough. * Tip ~ If the flour get’s sticky add more flour to the dough, just a little at a time, until it is not sticky anymore. Put it back into the bowl, cover with a towel and let rest 20 minutes.Divide the dough into 6 balls, and roll between your palms of our hand until you have a soft smooth ball. With a rolling pin, roll out each ball of dough into a thin circle about 1/8-inch thick.

Preheat a dry cast iron or non-stick pan over medium-high heat.  Place the flatbread in the hot pan and cook for one minute, or until small air bubbles appear. Flip over and cook for another minute. Flip again for about another minute. During this last flip you will notice the bread puffing up,  this is what you want to see. You also want small charred spots to form on the bread as well.

Remove immediately from the hot pan onto a platter. You are ready to enjoy your flatbread, roti, tortilla? But never the less, Enjoy. They can be kept warm in the oven if you are not serving them all at once.

On this flat bread I added some olive oil, butter lettuce, walnuts and shaved parmiagiana reggiano and cracked black pepper and a dash of salt.  Of course my men folk added the spicy cajun ingredients.
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Polenta with butternut squash veggie ragout

All day my son and I have been spending time cooking some creative dishes. He is out of school for Spring break so we get to have some fun in the kitchen. I love trying new things, so today I mixed butternut squash into my polenta recipe. It tasted delicious!  I also made an organic ragout. I hope you enjoy this recipe.

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Polenta with butternut squash with a veggie ragout

You will need:

Polenta:

1 1/2 cups of yellow corn grits

4 cups of water

1/2 cup of organic butternut squash ( frozen)

1/2  cup of 5 Italian Blend shredded cheese

Dash of black pepper, salt and garlic powder

Ragout

1 tbs of  olive oil

2 small zucchinis ( diced)

1 half of a med onion( chopped roughly)

1 med tomato (  deseeded and chopped size of the onions)

1/2 cup of smoked sundried tomatoes ( have that bacon taste)

2 garlic cloves ( chopped finely)

1/2 cup of dried porcini mushrooms

1/2  tsp of dried fennel seed

1/2 tsp of italian seasonings

1/2 tsp of sea salt

1/2 tsp of garlic powder

Dash of black pepper to taste. I like it a little spicy. 🙂

1/2 cup of water to keep ragout wet until veggies are tender ( I add water as needed, this is optional the tomatoes should give you enough water)

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Ragout

Sauté  onions and zucchini until transparent.

Add the the raw tomatoes and the garlic and sauté for 5 minutes.

Add all  your spices and stir all the veggies.

Bring everything to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

About 5 minutes before the dish is done add the mushrooms and sundried tomatoes to rehydrate. Continue to cook.

Serve on top of the Polenta

Polenta

Bring water to a boil. Add Butternut Squash. Allow to cook for 10 minutes remove the squash and mash most of it up in a bowl. Leave some pieces whole it makes the polenta look pretty. Add squash back to water. Bring the water back to a boil. Reduce to a simmer. Pour in polenta steadily, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until polenta is thickened.  Add the cheese, black pepper, garlic and sea salt.  Stir throughly. It should come away from sides of the pan, and be able to support a spoon. Cooking time 20 to 30 minutes.

To plate with LOVE:

Put polenta in a nice plate or bowl.
Add the Ragout and top with some of the 5 italian cheese blend or some parmesan. Sprinkle some parsley flakes for garnish and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Oh yes one last thing. Set the table with LOVE.

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