Monday, July 6, 2015

HAPPY SUMMER, friends!  I don't know about you, but I have been soaking up every single lazy, relaxing, rejuvenating moment of summer.  Seriously, I am so "in the summer zone" I haven't even put in my orders yet (shh! don't tell, I swear my Really Good Stuff cart has  1,000 items in it, I just need to put them on purchase order form!).  Anyway, as much as I would loooove to be working on TPT items right now, I just can't.  I know in a few weeks I will motivate myself to revamp some oldies or create some new products (maybe I'll get around to that K-3rd STEAM product I've been meaning to make for the past 18 months...) but for now, I am all about the beach, reading chic lit, attempting to exercise and .... COOKING!

Okay, so here is the deal.... I am starting a weekly link party all about cooking! You guys, who is loving cooking now that we aren't exhausted and just wanting to order take-away after a looooong day or faculty meeting/parent teacher conference!?  Cooking has once again become enjoyable.  My aim for this linky is to share simple, easy, and QUICK meals for teachers (or anyone!) to utilize after a long day. Simple steps, ingredients that won't break the bank, and most importantly- speedy!

Two years ago I couldn't even cook a piece of chicken on a George Foreman grill.  No, seriously, I was helpless.  Right around the time we got married, I got a ton of gorgeous cooking gifts off of my wedding registry.  I mean, if people were going to spend the money to buy me such nice presents, I figured I might as well have learned how to boil a pot of water.  Yikes!  Two years later, I still have my fair share of kitchen disasters and my super, super picky palate isn't helping (TRUE STORY: I didn't eat anything that wasn't white until I was 12) but, I have made a concerted effort to master some quick meals for the week nights.  Join in this linky and share your favorite simple and speedy meals.  Let's start a nice repertoire of recipes for heading (ahhh! I can't even say it...) Back To SchooL!

Here goes nothing...

ps- please be patient as I practice working on my recipe steps.  I feel like that Writers' Workshop lesson where you have the kids tell you how to make peanut butter and jelly and you follow their directions exactly and it is a disaster.  #teachernerd

Sausage Pasta

Super simple and delicious dinner, ready in less than 15 minutes!  Okay... Wish we luck with my directional skills!

I had some leftover spicy Italian sausage from grilling kebabs over the weekend and my husband loooves this sausage pasta dish so I figured, "why not?"

First, put a pot of salted water on the stove and wait for it to boil. 

While the water is heating up, I removed the sausage casing (cut down the center with a scissor or knife then pull off) and cut these little guys into about 3 pieces each (about 1/2 an inch thick).  Then throw them in a skillet on medium high heat with  a tablespoon of butter or olive oil.  Cook them until browned on the outside and no longer pink on the inside, about 8 minutes.  

I always add some minced garlic (1/2 teaspoon) and white wine (1/2 cup) into the pan during the last 3 minutes of cooking just to infuse a little extra flavor. 

While the sausages are cooking on the stove top, I throw in my FAVORITE ingredient EVER- STEAMFRESH veggies!  These are a GODSEND 3-5 minutes in the microwave and VOILA- fully cooked vegetables.  These are a staple in many, many of my meals.  
I use the Premium Selects broccoli florets for this recipe because the stalks just don't taste as good with the pasta and sausage.  
Throw these in the microwave for 5 minutes (check your time/wattage depending on your microwave).

Now, the water should be boiling and add in your favorite pasta.  I usually use orecchiette but those are super are to find at my local Stop and Shop. Tonight I just used penne.  Any pasta will do.  
Once the pasta and broccoli have finished place them into the pan with the sausages.  This helps them to really absorb the flavor of the white wine and garlic.  Mix it around a little then spoon the ingredients into your serving bowl.  

As you will learn, I put cheese on EVERYTHING.  I sprinkle a little a lot of pecorino romano (parmesan will do, too!) onto the pasta dish and my husband likes to add a little red pepper flakes for some extra heat.

2 sausages per person
1 cup of pasta per person
1 packet of Steamfresh broccoli
1 tablespoon of olive oil or butter 
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 cup of white wine
grated cheese to taste
red pepper flakes to taste

Dinner for two is served in less than 20 minutes!  Phew!

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