Tag Archives: sausage

Sausage Stuffing and Home-made Cranberry Sauce

Thanksgiving Kids Meal

I love Thanksgiving because nobody serves kid food at this meal.  There is simply no time or room in the oven for chicken nuggets.  The kids actually eat the simply prepared foods such as the turkey, corn and sweet potatoes.  You can have one meal for everyone (at least one day of the year)!!!

Two of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes are 1) Sausage Stuffing and 2) Cranberry-Pear Relish.  I have wonderful memories of my mom teaching me how to clean and prepare the turkey and make the stuffing.  Now, I enjoy cooking and teaching my younger cousin how to prepare these special dishes.  Thanksgiving is not just about the food but the traditions and memories associated with the meal.  What Thanksgiving traditions will your children cherish?  I hope you enjoy these recipes and that you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Sausage Stuffing

I always make a double batch for 12-15 people.

1)  Take 1/2 lb of Italian sausage out of casing and fry in a large pot, chopping into small bits until cooked through.  Move sausage to plate and set aside.

2)  In the same pot, heat 1 stick of butter and add the following veggies, cook until softened:

  • 1 ½ cups of chopped onions
  • 2 cups of peeled and chopped celery
  • 1 Tsp of Salt and ½ Tsp of pepper
  • 2 Tsp of Poultry Seasoning (or fresh sage, rosemary and thyme)
  • Optional:  1/2 cup of mushrooms and/or 1/4 cup of fennel (use top of fennel called “fronds” for added flavor)

3)  Once veggies are softened, remove from heat and add:

  • 1 bag of bread cubes (12 ozs)
  • ¼ cup of fresh chopped parsley
  • Cooked Sausage

4.  Gradually add about 2 cups of chicken broth and stir until moistened adding more broth as needed. Should be moistened but not soaking wet.

5.  Place in sprayed baking dish.  You can refrigerate for 1-2 days.  Heat on 350 for 30 minutes (add about 1/4 cup of chicken broth before heating if looks dry).

Cranberry Pear Relish

1)  Bring 1 ½ cups of sugar and ½ cup of water to a boil for 5 minutes.

2)  Add the following and cook on Med/High:

*  1 bag of cranberries (12 oz)
*  2 peeled and diced pears (or 1 can)
*   1 small can of mandarin oranges
*   1/2 Tsp of cinnamon
*  1/2 Tsp of Orange or Lemon zest

3)  Stir and continue cooking until thick like jam (about 15 minutes).  If sauce starts to stick to the pan, reduce heat to Medium.  Press and “pop” all the cranberries.  Cook until smooth and much of the water is absorbed.

4)  Cover and refrigerate for a few hours or days.  This will thicken in the fridge.

Don’t forget to prepare a timeline of tasks to be done to ensure that everything is HOT and ready to serve at the same time – the biggest challenge!

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Chicken/Sausage Pasta (15 Mins.)

15 Minute Meals and 3 Minute Abs

Dinner-time comes at roughly the same time each night – so can you tell me why there are some nights we look at the clock in complete and utter shock, “Oh my god!  It’s dinner-time, what are we going to do?!?”.   Imagine waking up one day, “Oh no! It’s Christmas Eve and I haven’t bought a single present!”.   The shock of dinner-time sneaks up on all of us and it happened to me tonight.  So I looked in my freezer and whipped this up with just a few ingredients in just 15 (not 30) minutes.  I guarantee it was faster than chicken nuggets and mac n’ cheese and required the same number of dishes.  I just wish I could get the same amazing results with 3 Minute Abs.

Pasta with Chicken/Sausage

  • Cook ¾ box of Pasta (add lots of salt to the water).
  • Take the meat out of the casing of 4 Italian Chicken Sausages (I only had 3 so I cut up a single chicken breast and added it in). 
  • Fry the sausage/chicken breaking into small pieces until it is cooked through.
  • Place the cooked pasta in a bowl and mix with the sausage/chicken.  Add about ½ cup of pasta water and ¼ cup of parmesan cheese.  Stir and serve!

Note:  You can cook some veggies with the meat (e.g., mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes).  Add salt/pepper and herbs to taste (e.g., parsley, basil). The flavor from the Fresh Market sausage alone was amazing!

How the Kids Can Help

  • Choose the pasta you will cook
  • Add salt to the pasta water
  • Identify some veggies to add to the meat
  • Taste the pasta to see if it’s cooked
  • Set the table/fill the drinks

Did You Know?

  • The family meal helps pre-schoolers develop better language skills (they may hear different words used at the table than they heard during the day).
  • The link between processed foods and cancer is being proven more every day.
  • Create Food Flexibility in your Family!  Life is so much easier when everyone eats the same healthy meal.