Wool Crepe and Italian Sausage – Hold The Pasta
4 links of spicy Italian sausage
3 cups baby spinach
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 small lemon, juiced
1 red pepper, roasted or pan seared and sliced in thick pieces
1 yellow pepper, roasted or pan seared and sliced in thick pieces
1/3 Tuscan white beans, cooked or canned
2 TBSP olive oil
sprigs of fresh, oregano, rosemary and thyme
salt and pepper, to taste
Next to how yummy and good for you this dish is, what I love about it is how incredibly easy it is to make. And fast too. When preparing meats, fish, poultry (all animals), my suggestion is to forgo the usual market aisles and seek out the specialists – butchers, fish market guys, etc. These professionals can educate you on all the wonders of farming, buying, special cuts and preparing “meat”, thus making your meal and life exponentially better. I like Italian sausages (the pork kind), because they tend to be spicy and that’s my palette. Of course, you can find a mild sausage, which is why having a dialogue with your meat dealer is so importanto:)
The sausages take about 13 minutes to cook, stove top, so I usually get them started after I’ve added the olive oil, garlic and onion to a separate pan (on low heat) for the vegetables and beans. As they cook/saute/get periodically rolled around the sauce pan, I work on the veggies. After the garlic and onions start to brown, add the beans, then the spinach. Ok, so you get the picture. The last vegetable to be added should be the peppers because they have essentially already been cooked/grilled. (a little cheat here – sometimes when I visit the farmer’s market I buy in bulk and spend a few hours on a weekend afternoon cooking up stuff which I will freeze or jar and eat later…case in point:) Toss regularly and once the vegetables are done (the spinach is cooked), add the lemon juice, salt, pepper and fresh herbs to taste. Slice sausages at a diagonal and toss with veggies and beans almost like a salad. Add Parmesan and mangia!
To the Table:
Don’t forget the wine and remote.
Pairs Well With
I have several guilty pleasures. Too many to list here including the PG ones, which is why, well at least one reason why I am observing Lent this year and abstaining from gobbling bread, pasta and rice. A detoxed body is a detoxed soul. At least that’s my thinking voice mantra for the next month plus. Oh wait, I did just write it out loud, didn’t I. It should be noted, this kind of purging, the non-Catholic/quarter Jewish Catholic guilt that persuaded me to turn the other cheek, away from carbs is as shamefully pleasurable as the bad habit I’m kicking to the curb. The irony of being committed. Considering my inability to ingest carbs moderately, there’s no harm in further admitting that there are times aside from during Lent, when I could really tuck into a fat bowl of pasta with meat sauce, sop up the sauce with garlic bread, cleanse my palette with a chocolate biscotti and a glass (or 2) of Merlot. Note, I was smart and didn’t give up the wine…or the biscotti for that matter.
It’s during these times that I can clearly see the links between my more and less virtuous ways. And when I say “these times”, I am referring as much to Mob Wives and Fashion Week as to Sunday afternoon dinner and PMS. Now here in lies a deeper, more complex aspect to many of my guilty pleasures – all things fierce, feminine, food and fashion related. I realize it’s hard to comprehend, but bread, salvation, Staten Island reality TV, Dolce & Gabbana are connected; to each other and me. Salute to a big mangia feast cooked up for a guilty fashionista with a brocade and Good Fellas fetish. Oh, dear did I say “fetish”? Another “F” word.