This quick recipe results in a full-flavored replica of a classic version that has simmered for hours. I served it to my family for our past two Mardi Gras feasts- followed by a mandatory King Cake, of course! 🙂
This recipe was adapted from David Guas, a New Orleans native and chef-owner of Bayou Coffee Bar and Eatery in Arlington, Virginia, via The Washington Post.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
- 8 ounces smoked, cooked pork sausage
- 2 15-oz cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 T canola oil
- 1 medium green bell pepper, stemmed and seeded, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1 medium sweet onion, diced
- 7-8 scallions, sliced (about 1/2 cup)
- 6 cloves garlic, sliced
- 3 cups chicken stock
- 3 fresh thyme sprigs or 1 tsp dried thyme leaves
- 3 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 2-3 stems flat-leaf parsley, leaves minced
- about 1-2 tsp coarse salt, to taste
- 1 cup white Basmati rice cooked in 2 cups chicken stock, for serving
- hot sauce, for serving, optional
- Cut the sausage in half lengthwise, then slice into half-moons.
- Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat.
- Add the sausage and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring a few times, so some of its fat renders. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the sausage to a shallow bowl.
- Add the diced bell pepper, onion, scallions, and garlic to the rendered fat in the pot; stir to coat.
- Increase the heat to medium-high and cook for 2 minutes, stirring, until just softened.
- Add the beans, stock, thyme, bay leaves, black and cayenne peppers.
- Reduce the heat to medium; cover and cook for 25 minutes.
- Uncover and remove the bay leaves and thyme sprig stems with a slotted spoon.
- Using the back of a wooden spoon, mash about 1 cup of the beans against the side of the pot, or until desired thickness is achieved.
- Return the sausage to the pot. When heated through, stir in the parsley.
- Serve hot, over cooked rice, with hot sauce, as desired. I have served it in individual bowls topped with a scoop of rice or in a serving dish over rice.
Posted in Holiday, Pork, Recipes, Soups, Stews, & Chowders
Tags: Basmati, dinner, green bell pepper, kidney beans, mardi gras, New Orleans, pork, pork sausage, quick, red beans, rice, sausage, scallions, sweet onions, thyme
I made this sauce when I was still swimming in gorgeous fresh tomatoes. Because the sauce is so simple, it really showcases them. That being said, the quality of the tomatoes used is very important.
There are many debates about this famous sauce online. Much of the discussion is about whether or not butter (and its richness) should be incorporated into a tomato sauce. My vote is “YES!” 🙂 After tasting it, I think most would agree with me. Other discussions revolve around dissatisfaction with the results compared to the “hype.” Comments about the sauce being soupy and underwhelming may stem from using lower quality tomatoes or an abbreviated cooking time. We loved it.
My intention was to freeze the sauce to enjoy it during the winter, but it was too delicious to wait. The debate about this sauce in my house was about what type of pasta to serve it with! 😉 My husband won with his choice of pappardelle. Great.
This recipe was adapted from Hazan Family Favorites: Beloved Italian Recipes by Guiliano Hazan, via Epicurious.com. I increased the cooking time and reserved the onions after removing them from the tomato mixture (I pureed and seasoned them to serve as a spread on toasted baguette slices). Using fresh instead of canned tomatoes may have altered the total cooking time. I more than doubled the cooking time in order to achieve my desired consistency. I also pureed the finished sauce. Addictive!
Yield: Makes enough sauce for 1 pound of pasta
- 2 pounds ripe tomatoes (or 3 cups canned whole peeled tomatoes with their juice, preferably San Marzano)
- 1 medium sweet yellow onion
- 5 tablespoons butter
- 1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, to finish
- If using fresh tomatoes, peel them: Score the base of each tomato and place it in a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove the tomato with a wire strainer and peel off the skin.
- Coarsely chop the fresh or canned tomatoes.
- Trim both ends of the onion; peel it and cut it in half lengthwise.
- Put the tomatoes, onion, butter, and salt in a 4- to 5-quart saucepan over medium heat. When the tomatoes begin to bubble, lower the heat to a slow but steady simmer. Cook, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes, until the tomatoes are no longer watery and the sauce has reduced, about 45 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the size and shape of the pot. (I used an enameled cast iron pot.) The sauce is done when the butter has separated from the tomatoes and there is no remaining liquid.
- Puree the finished sauce, if desired.
- Prepare one pound of pasta in boiling, salted water according to package directions.
- When you toss pasta with the sauce, add about 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Note: If the sauce is doubled, the cooking time will increase.
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Posted in Pasta, Recipes, Sauces, Vegetarian
Tags: butter, dinner, fresh tomato sauce, Hazan, Italian, onion, Parmigiano Reggiano, pasta, San Marzano, sauce, sweet onions, tomato sauce, tomatoes, vegetarian
Okay… back to my belated Thanksgiving feast posts…
I struggle selecting a “stuffing” for our Thanksgiving Menu. This version was simple and perfect. I loved that it was a traditional Southern recipe and that it incorporated an unsweetened cast iron skillet cornbread.
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Kim Severson. I used medium grind cornmeal. The cornbread is made the night before so that it can harden slightly. I let the cubed white bread sit out overnight as well. We ate it without incorporating meat, but this base recipe could easily be modified to include sausage or even nuts and/or apples. The author suggested eating leftovers mixed with shredded leftover turkey as well.
Yield: Serves 8 to 10
For the Cornbread:
- 4 tablespoons/56 grams butter or bacon drippings
- 2 cups/340 grams yellow cornmeal, medium grind (use the freshest, best quality you can find)
- 1 ½ teaspoons coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups/473 milliliters buttermilk, preferably full fat (I used low-fat)
For the Dressing:
- 3 cups soft white bread, crusts removed and torn or cut into 1-inch pieces (do not pack)
- ½ cup butter (1 stick), plus more for the pan
- 2 cups chopped sweet onions
- 1 ½ cups chopped celery (4 or 5 stalks)
- 1 ½ teaspoons coarse salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 ¼ tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- ¾ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 to 5 cups rich chicken or turkey stock, preferably homemade
- 3/4 pound pork sausage (such as spicy Italian sausage, fresh andouille or spicy Southern-style sausage)
- 2 1/2 cups of toasted pecans, chopped
- chopped apples
- Make the cornbread: Heat oven to 450 degrees, preferably on convection.
- Put butter in an 11-inch skillet. Cast-iron is best here, but any ovenproof skillet will do. Heat butter in oven for about 5 to 7 minutes, or until butter has melted and is just starting to brown.
- While butter melts, whisk together cornmeal, salt and baking powder.
- In another small bowl, lightly beat eggs, then add buttermilk and stir until mixture is combined.
- Pour egg mixture into dry ingredients and stir well.
- Remove hot pan from oven, pour butter into batter and stir until batter looks uniform.
- Pour batter back into the pan and bake for 20 minutes or until the top has begun to just brown.
- Remove cornbread and let it cool on a rack.
- Tear or cut it into large pieces and place in a large bowl. Let it sit out overnight to dry out slightly.
- Prepare the dressing: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine cornbread and white bread in a large bowl, tossing to mix, and breaking cornbread into smaller pieces.
- Melt butter in a large skillet, and add onions, celery and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Sauté until vegetables have softened, about 6 minutes.
- Add vegetables to bread mixture and combine.
- Lightly beat eggs and add to bowl.
- Sprinkle in herbs, remaining 1 teaspoon salt and the pepper and toss together.
- Add 4 cups broth and stir well.
- Using your hands, work the mixture to get a very lumpy, thick, batter-like consistency.
- Add another cup of stock if needed. The mixture should be very wet and pourable but without standing liquid.
- Butter a 2-quart ovenproof dish. (such as an 8-by-11-inch baking dish. A deeper vessel could take longer to bake; a more shallow dish less time.)
- Pour the mixture into the baking dish and bake until dressing puffs slightly and has browned well around the edges, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- If you have drippings from a roasted turkey, spoon some over the top about 30 minutes into the baking time.
- To Add Sausage: Brown 3/4 pound pork sausage in a pan, crumbling it into small pieces as it cooks. Add to the bread mixture along with the vegetables.
- To Include Nuts: Add 2 1/2 cups of toasted pecans, chopped, to the vegetable and bread mixture.
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Posted in Baking, Holiday, Recipes, Sides, Thanksgiving, Vegetarian
Tags: andouille, buttermilk, cast iron skillet, cornbread, dressing, pecans, pork sausage, sage, sausage, side dish, skillet, Southern, stuffing, sweet onions, Thanksgiving, thyme, vegetarian, white bread