One-Pan Pork Sausage Meatballs with Green Lentils

I love one-pan dishes! This dish is made in the oven using one baking dish. It was also easy to prepare. ­čÖé I modified the recipe due to personal preference- and to incorporate ingredients that I had readily available. I included all of the options in the recipe below.

This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Ali Slagle. I modified the proportions and oven temperature, used celery instead of fennel, and added carrots. I also substituted sweet Italian pork sausage for hot sausage and green lentils for brown lentils. The vinegar was essential to the finished dish.

Yield: Serves 6

  • 4 celery stalks, diced or 1 fennel bulb, cored, cut into 1/2-inch wedges through the root, plus 1/4 cup fresh fennel fronds
  • 4 large carrots, diced
  • 1 T extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pounds bulk hot or sweet Italian pork sausage (or fresh Italian sausages, casings removed)(or a combination)
  • 1 egg
  • 3┬ácups chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 cups green or brown lentils
  • 4 to 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • 1-2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves, plus more for serving
  1. Heat the oven to 425┬░, preferably on convection.
  2. In a 9×13-inch baking pan or baking dish, gently toss the celery and carrots (or fennel wedges) with the olive oil to coat. Season with salt and pepper. (I used a ceramic baking dish.)
  3. Roast until vegetables are golden brown underneath, about 10 minutes for fennel or up to 20 minutes for carrots and celery. (Fennel will not be tender at this point.)
  4. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, use your hands or a spoon to mix the sausage with the egg until combined. Roll the mixture into 16 (1 1/2-inch) meatballs.
  5. Add the chicken stock, lentils, garlic and rosemary to the roasted vegetables. Stir to combine, then season with 3/4 teaspoon salt.
  6. Place the meatballs in the lentil mixture, drizzle the meatballs with olive oil, then roast until the meatballs are browned on top and lentils are tender, 25 to 30 minutes.
  7. Transfer the meatballs to a plate. Discard the rosemary sprig, then stir in the vinegar, parsley leaves and fennel fronds, if using (reserve a few fronds for garnishing, if desired). Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  8. Spoon the lentils and any braising liquid onto shallow bowls and top with the meatballs.
  9. Garnish with additional parsley leaves and fennel fronds, if desired.

Grilled Pork Chops with Fried-Sage Salsa Verde and Sage Potatoes

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I am such a sauce person- this dish was super saucy! Sauce on the pork chops with sauce on the side. ­čÖé The recipe was adapted from a “staff-favorite” Food and Wine dish. I adapted the recipe by decreasing the olive oil and by incorporating the leftover sage-grapeseed oil into mashed potatoes with grilled scallions. This was a wonderful dish to make with my giant herb garden sage and parsley plants too. Very flavorful and tasty.

  • Grapeseed oil, for frying
  • 1/2 cup sage leaves
  • 1 medium-large shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 10 T cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 cup lightly packed parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced celery heart with leaves
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed, drained and minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced thyme
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • six┬á3/4-pound boneless pork chops, about 1 inch thick
  • 1 1/2 pounds gold potatoes
  • 6-8 scallions, grilled
  • milk, to taste
  1. In a small saucepan, heat 1/4 inch of grapeseed oil until shimmering. Add the sage and fry over moderate heat, stirring, until the sizzling stops and the leaves are crisp, 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain.
  2. In a mini food processor, mince the shallot. Add the vinegar and let stand for 5 minutes. Add the parsley, celery, capers and thyme and pulse to mince; season with salt and pepper. Pulse in the olive oil.
  3. Meanwhile, bring the potatoes to a boil in a large pot of salted water. Cook until tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and mash.
  4. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Brush the pork chops with olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Grill over moderate heat, turning once, until lightly charred and an instant-read thermometer inserted near the bone registers 135┬░, 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer the chops to a platter and let rest for 5 minutes.
  5. Lightly brush the scallions with olive oil. Grill until tender. Coarsely slice.
  6. Stir the fried sage leaves into the salsa verde and serve with the pork chops.
  7. Stir the sage-grapeseed oil into the mashed potatoes, small amounts at a time, with milk, to taste, to achieve desired texture. Stir in the chopped grilled scallions. Season with salt and pepper.

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One Year Ago:

Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Tomatillo Salsa

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This dish was a healthy and light dinner. With the salsa made in advance, it was very quick to put together as well. I LOVE tangy tomatillos and they are wonderful in this mild salsa. I assembled the tacos for my family, but next time I will let everyone assemble their own…. we had such varied preferences for the toppings. I liked all of them- with extra salsa, my husband would have skipped the crunchy celery, and my son would have used minimal tomatillo salsa. My daughter passed on the shrimp! This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Tim Byres.

We ate them as part of a special meal to celebrate the completion of the first full week of school; our appetizer was guacamole with tortilla chips, our sides were rice and refried beans, and our special celebratory dessert was Biscoff crunch and swirl vanilla bean ice cream. We ate outside and rehashed our week! ­čÖé

Yield: Serves 4

  • 1/2 pound tomatillosÔÇöhusked, rinsed and quartered
  • 1/2 small onion, quartered
  • 1 jalape├▒o, seeded and chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly black pepper
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 2 celery ribs, thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1 T fresh lime juice (about 1/2 a lime)
  • 1 1/4 pounds medium shrimp (about 36), shelled and deveined
  • Twelve 6-inch bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes (or metal skewers)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
  • 8 to 12 corn tortillas, warmed
  • Shredded green cabbage and parsley leaves, for serving
  • Sour cream, if desired, for serving
  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the tomatillos, onion, jalape├▒o and garlic with 1 cup of water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until the vegetables are softened, about 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the vegetables to a blender or food processor.
  2. Boil the cooking liquid until reduced to 1/4 cup, then add it to the blender or food processor and let cool completely. Puree the salsa and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the salsa to a bowl, stir in the chopped cilantro and refrigerate until chilled, about 45 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a bowl, toss the celery with the lime juice; season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. Combine the cabbage and parsley. Set aside.
  5. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan; oil the grill grate. Thread 3 shrimp onto each skewer. Brush the shrimp with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over high heat, turning once, until lightly charred and cooked through, about 4 minutes. Remove the shrimp from the skewers and transfer to a platter. Serve the shrimp with the salsa, sour cream, celery salad, warm tortillas, cabbage and parsley leaves so guests can assemble their own tacos.

One Year Ago: Back to School Blondies

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