Tag Archives: sausage

Chicago-style Deep Dish Pizza

Red checkered tablecloth sold separately.

Living in New York we’ve come to realize that pizza allegiances border on religious zealotry to which we say, why restrict yourself when it comes to pie? Thanks to Jake’s friend Sandy’s suggestion we tried making a deep dish pizza in a cast iron skillet and, to no one’s surprise, the woman was right. It’s almost too easy, which is to say, why aren’t you making one right now?

Equipment Needed: Cast Iron Skillet, Frying Pan, Mixing Bowl, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Microplane,Wooden Spoon

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 4-6

Suggested Wine Pairing: Chianti, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Cabernet Sauvignon

Suggested Beer Pairing: Red Ales, less-hoppy Pale Ales, Brown Ales, Amber Ales

Ingredients:

  • 1 pre-made ball of pizza dough (we used a garlic herb dough that suited us just fine)(about $1.99/package)
  • 1 lb Italian sausage ($3.99/lb)
  • 1 small bunch of broccoli ($2.99/bunch)
  • 1  small onion ($0.99/lb)
  • 1 small red bell pepper ($2.99/lb)
  • 1 lb fresh mozzarella ($7.99/lb)
  • 3 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 2 TBSP fresh rosemary ($1.50/bunch)
  • 1 – 28 oz cans of crushed tomatoes ($2.19/each)
  • 1/3 C shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese ($12.99/lb)
  • extra virgin olive oil ($9.99/32 oz)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 400° F.
  • Mince your garlic cloves and rosemary together to get them as fine as possible.
  • Put a frying pan over medium heat and add a little olive oil to the bottom to help keep things moving. Remove the sausages from their casings, throw them in the pan and break them up with your spoon. Toss in the garlic and rosemary and cook until lightly browned (about 5-8 minutes).

Be careful not to overcook the sausage, it's still going in the oven once you're done here.

  • While the sausage is cooking away, pour about 2 tablespoons of olive oil into your cast iron skillet. Rub the oil around the pan so the sides and bottom are evenly coated. Proceed to spread the pizza dough across the bottom and up to the top of the skillet’s rim. Remember, this is a deep dish so you want to make a crust that can support the mountain of toppings you’re about to add.

You're gonna need to work the dough a bit to get it to stay up along the sides.

  • Cut your mozzarella into 1/8th inch – 1/4 inch slices and line the bottom of the crust. That’s right, traditional Chicago deep dish puts the cheese on first. Here’s a towel to wipe up your mind that just got blown all over.

We highly recommend splurging on the freshest mozzarella you can find for this one; it's a noticeable difference.

  • Slice up your onion and pepper into thin strips and cut your broccoli into small florets. Spread these veggies evenly over the top of the cheese.
  • Open the can of tomatoes and pour them into a large mixing bowl. Add a pinch of salt and pepper, and some crushed red pepper if you want to give it a little kick. When the sausage is done pour it in with the tomatoes and stir everything together. Spoon it into the pie to cover everything and make sure to distribute the sauce evenly for uniform cooking.

Spread the sauce evenly and fill every space not occupied by cheese or veggies.

  • Pop that monster into the oven for about 20 minutes. You’ll have to check in on your pizza around 18 minutes and every couple of minutes after that to make sure things are cooking evenly. The crust should be crispy and the sauce should be bubbling when it’s done. Grate on some Parmigiano to finish things off and let it rest for about 10 minutes to allow the toppings to set up a bit for easier serving and eating; the skillet will keep it warm.

Turkey in Bed (aka Breakfast Pigs in a Blanket)

Look at 'em. Little turkey flavor torpedoes.

This breakfast bastardization of everyone’s favorite party finger food came to us after a long night of chicanery and the creative genius that can only come from one too many tallboys. To the benefit of the world and fat kids everywhere, however, they turned out awesome and are as easy to make as they are delicious.

Equipment Needed: Baking Sheet, Basting Brush, Small Bowl, Frying Pan, Tongs, Cooling Rack (optional)

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 8 – 10

Suggested Wine Pairing: You shouldn’t really be drinking wine with breakfast but we’ll assume you’re having brunch. Try a mimosa or fruity white.

Suggested Beer Pairing: You probably shouldn’t be drinking beer for breakfast either. Try an oatmeal stout, though.

Ingredients:

  • 2 packages refrigerated crescent rolls ($2.69/tube)
  • 12 turkey breakfast sausages (about $3.69/16 oz package)
  • 1/2 C grade A maple syrup (about $7/8 oz)

Preparation:

  • Put your frying pan over medium heat and put as many sausages in as you can fit without overcrowding; you’re probably gonna have to do two batches. The point here is to pre-cook the sausages a bit before popping then in the oven so they fully cook through in the same time as it takes for the rolls to bake. Give them about 4 minutes on each side and drain thoroughly on a paper towel when finished.
  • Crack open the crescent roll containers and peel apart the individual pieces. Place a sausage on the wide end and roll the dough around it. Put that little gobbler on your baking sheet and repeat until you’ve wrapped all of them.

Roll 'em if you got 'em.

  • Pop them in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove those puppies and baste each one with a healthy coat of maple syrup. Return them to the oven for about 3-5 more minutes until the rolls are a rich brown.

Brush the top of each one thoroughly for maximum mapleness.

  • Set on the cooling rack to let them firm up before serving (the dough may be a little soft because of the fat in the sausage).

3 Little Pigs Pork Chops with Spinach and White Beans

Time for some hot pig-on-pig-in-pig action.

This recipe came to us in a vision as we were pondering how to put as much pork in a dish as possible. Pork chops, pork sausage and, of course, bacon bring the whole hog to the table while the spinach and bean accompaniment make you feel slightly less guilty (while cutting the richness a bit). Maple syrup keeps the vice train chugging along, providing a nice sweet complement to the protein.

Equipment Needed: 13 x 9 Baking Pan, Wooden Spoon, Frying Pan, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Small Bowl, Pastry Brush or Basting Brush, Meat Thermometer

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 4

Suggested Wine Pairing: Pinot Noir, Beaujolais, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc

Suggested Beer Pairing: Dunkelwiess, Lager, Medium-bodied Ales

Ingredients:

  • 4 center cut bone-in pork chops ($4.50/lb)
  • 12 strips of bacon ($6.99/lb)
  • 3 links of sweet Italian sausage (about 1/2 lb) ($3.99/lb)
  • 1 medium onion ($0.99/lb)
  • 3 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 3 TBSP extra virgin olive oil ($9.99/32 oz)
  • 1 can cannellini beans ($1.69/10.75 oz can)
  • 1 package frozen chopped spinach ($1.79/10 oz box)
  • 1/4 C pilsner or American lager (we used Budweiser) (price varies)
  • 2 TBSP white vinegar ($1.99/32 oz)
  • 1/2 C grade A maple syrup (about $7/8 oz)
  • 2 TBSP fresh rosemary ($1.50/bunch)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 375°F. Dice the onion and mince the garlic.
  • Put your frying pan over medium heat and coat the bottom with olive oil. Toss in the onion and cook it down for about 5 minutes.
  • While your veg is cooking, remove the casings from your sausage links and chop up the meat. When the onion has softened add the sausage and cook it until it’s browned, about 8 minutes, making sure to keep it broken up with your spoon.

Skin those sausages!

  • As your sausage cooks (yes, you’ll need to multi-task) place the pork chops on a cutting board and run your knife down the horizontal center of the meat to create a pocket.

Be careful not to cut all the way through the chop and keep firm pressure on it so your knife doesn't slip.

  • Once the sausage mixture is properly browned, spoon it into each chop being sure not to over-stuff them. (Turn the stove off, but don’t clean the pan, you’ll want the scrapings for later.)

Try to resist the urge to overstuff the chop so you can still wrap the bacon around each piece.

  • Lay out 3 strips of bacon on your cutting board. Give the pork chops a healthy sprinkle of salt and pepper and wrap the bacon around the each piece.

Wrap the chop so the loose ends of the bacon will sit on the bottom of the baking pan.

  • Remove the rosemary leaves from the stalk and mince them up. In a small bowl, mix them in with the maple syrup and use your brush to coat each pork chop evenly on all sides. Pop those little piggies in the oven for 30 minutes. They’re done when the juice runs clear or the internal temperature reaches 160°F (or about 155° if you like them on the medium side).

Spinach and Beans Preparation:

  • While your pork chops are cooking, take your frying pan and turn the stove back up to medium. Add the garlic and cook for a minute, then pour in the beer and scrape the tasty bits off the bottom.
  • Drain the beans and throw them in. Add the spinach, vinegar and a palmful of salt and pepper and stir occasionally until things are warmed through, about 15 minutes or so.

Remember to drain the beans so the spinach doesn't end up too soggy.

  • When the pork chops are finished lay down a bed of veggies and place them on top. Proceed with amazing porky excess.

Brotherly Love Lasagna

Mama mia that's a luscious lasagna!

This remastered lasagna recipe was inspired by the amazingly ridiculous roast pork sandwich at DiNic’s in the Reading Terminal Market in Philly. Broccoli rabe provides a pleasant bitter contrast to the spicy sausage and sharp provolone that take this from potluck standby to punch-yourself-in-the-face addictive. Purists will scoff but you will smile as you dig in for seconds.

Equipment Needed: 13 x 9 Baking Pan, 3 QT Pot, Frying Pan, Colander, Large Bowl, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Cheese Grater, Wooden Spoon

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 8

Suggested Wine Pairing: Chianti, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, Montalpuciano d’Abruzzo

Suggested Beer Pairing: You can drink almost anything other than hoppy beers with this one. Light beers provide a crisp contrast while darker ones provide a rich complement.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb hot Italian sausage ($3.99/lb)
  • 2 bunches of broccoli rabe (about 2 lbs) ($2.99/bunch)
  • 2 medium onions ($0.99/lb)
  • 8 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 12 oz (3/4 lb) extra sharp or aged provolone (about $8.99/lb)
  • 1 package of no-boil lasagna noodles (yes, we’re being lazy but trust us, it’s loads easier to use these)($2.29/box)
  • 2- 28 oz cans of crushed tomatoes ($2.19/each)
  • 15 oz ricotta cheese ($3.99/15 oz tub)
  • 1/3 C shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese ($12.99/lb)
  • 1/3 C red wine (price varies, use something you would want to drink)
  • About 1/4 C extra virgin olive oil, divided ($9.99/32 oz)
  • 3 TBSP balsamic vinegar (about $6/17 oz bottle)
  • 2-3 TBSP Italian seasoning ($3.39/1 oz jar)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Start things off by mincing your garlic cloves and doing a fine dice on your onions.

Eat this with people you don't mind being close to.

  • Put the pot over low heat and coat the bottom with olive oil. After it’s warmed up for a couple minutes toss in half of your garlic and half of your onions. Throw in a palmful of salt and pepper and cook the veggies down.
  • After the aromatics have cooked for about 5 minutes pour in the tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, red wine, Italian seasoning and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix everything well and keep the sauce over low heat until you’re ready to assemble the lasagna. Make sure you stir it occasionally so the sauce doesn’t stick to the bottom.

A little red wine adds some depth to your sauce.

  • While the marinara is simmering wash your broccoli rabe and chop it into 1 inch pieces. Put your frying pan over medium heat and coat the bottom of it with olive oil. Toss in the rest of the onions and garlic and cook them down the same way you did for the sauce minus the salt and pepper.
  • When the veggies have cooked down, add the broccoli rabe to the pan and give it a good dose of salt and pepper. Cook everything down until it’s thoroughly wilted; about 5-8 minutes (cover the pan to make things go faster).

Add the salt to the broccoli rabe to help draw some of the moisture out.

  • While your greens are cooking preheat the oven to 375°F then grate your provolone and set it aside.
  • Remove the casings from your sausage links and chop up the meat. When the broccoli rabe is properly wilted transfer it to your mixing bowl and put the sausage in the frying pan over medium heat. Cook it until it’s browned, about 5-8 minutes, making sure to keep it broken up with your spoon. Drain the excess fat and toss the sausage in the mixing bowl with the veggies.

There's just something naughty-looking about this picture.

  • Taste your marinara sauce and adjust the salt, pepper and Italian seasoning to your liking. When you’re satisfied take it off the stove and stir it in with your meat and veg. Spoon a layer of the mixture into your baking pan and add a single layer of lasagna noodles on top to cover it.
  • Proceed to spoon in more sauce to cover the noodles. Take your ricotta cheese and layer globs on so they’re relatively evenly spaced. Sprinkle a small bit of the provolone on top and cover with another layer of noodles. Repeat the process until you reach the top of the pan.

Save yourself the frustration and just spread the ricotta with your hands. Unlike your mother we encourage playing with your food.

  • For the last layer, spoon sauce on the noodles but no ricotta. Take the majority of your provolone and cover the sauce with a vengeance. Gently cover the pan with aluminum foil, tenting it a bit so it’s not in direct contact with the cheese.
  • Pop the lasagna in the oven for 35 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for another 15 or so until the cheese is bubbly and nicely browned. Remove it from the oven and let it sit for at least 10 minutes before serving so the layers have a chance to settle and your lasagna doesn’t slide apart as soon as it hits your plate. Buon appetito!