Quick Dinner Idea: Sausage Medallions with Onions, Peas and Zucchini

Happy Saturday, friends. I’m clueless how Friday got away from me! Glad I had this one written up and pretty much ready to go–and that Windows 7 recovers EVERYTHING when one lets the battery run out on the laptop.

Chances are this recipe already exists. Here is a version I threw together one Friday night when I wasn’t in the mood for what hubby and my younger son were eating (ground beef with sauteed onions and zucchini stirred together with white rice and a little Parmesan cheese). I had reserved some of the zucchini/onion mixture and had leftover peas in the fridge.

The following ingredients cook into a hearty meal for one. Leftovers are sure to taste better the next day but, uh, I ate everything rather than test my theory, lol. (Maybe next time).

You will need:

1 large sweet Italian sausage link

1 large onion (chopped)

1 medium zucchini (chopped or sliced thinly and pieces quartered)

¼ lb frozen peas

canola or olive oil

seasoned bread crumbs

salt/pepper/Adobo

grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Poke holes in sausage with fork. Put in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium and cook until sausage is close to fully cooked. (You could skip this step, but much of the fat and salt will boil out this way.) Remove sausage from pot and set aside. Allow sausage to cool a little then slice into medallions (about 3/8-inch thick).

Sautee about 2/3 of the chopped onion and all the zucchini to just under desired tenderness in a medium or large frying pan (non-stick preferred by me. Cast iron works well too.) Season with salt, pepper and/or Adobo to your taste. Remove from pan and set aside.

In a separate fry pan, heat oil over medium heat. Sauté the remaining onions until translucent and tender. Add frozen peas. Lower heat to medium-low, stirring peas until tender. Turn off heat. Sprinkle liberally with bread crumbs (and cheese, if desired). Cover tightly for several minutes.

Add a little oil to the same fry pan where you sautéed the onions and zucchini. When the oil is hot, brown the sausage medallions (about five minutes either side, or desired color/doneness is reached). Stir in the onions, zucchini and peas. Heat through. Serve as is or over pasta or rice. Makes for a hearty sandwich too.

Here is how it looks. I happen to love the different shades of green against the white plate.

Note: Grilled chicken breast, shrimp and beef strips work well in place of the sausage. Experiment and have some fun! (BTW, the veggies and sausage can be cooked a day ahead and stirred together last minute for an even quicker meal. I’d probably make the entire dish though, and just reheat–gives all those flavors a chance to really meld together.)

In other JA news, hubby and I are celebrating wedding anniversary SEVENTEEN (!) tomorrow. (How did THAT much time slip by?) In honor of the day we tied the knot, I am re-running a recently-written post on commitment. Would love for you to stop in and say, ‘Hi!’ (You could also let me know if you tried this recipe. ;))

Like what you saw here? Please take a moment to click on a SHARE button. Maybe someone else has absolutely NO idea what to throw together for dinner tonight…

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy your day,

Joanna

Sunflowers and Home Fries

Happy Friday, friends! Hope you’re all geared up for a fun and/or restful weekend. Our weather  is promising much-needed rain, but so far the sun is having its way.

This photo is for writer-blogger Darlene Steelman (always a great collection of articles at her blog):

This recipe is dedicated to author JT Ellison over at Twitter (a.k.a. @thrillerchick)—she happened on one of my tweets and asked for the recipe. I am happy to oblige!

Joanna’s Home Fries (inspired by hubby*)—serves 4-5.

Sorry, no photo today–will post one as soon as I make them again :)!

You will need: 

5-6 large potatoes (Eastern or Idaho)

2 red, orange and/or yellow bell peppers (one of each works too, and makes for a very colorful dish)

1-2 large cloves of garlic, chopped or minced (optional)

1 large yellow (or Vidalia) onion

canola or olive oil

salt/pepper/paprika/Adobo to taste

Here’s what to do: 

Peel and rinse potatoes before cutting into pieces about 1-inch square (pieces this size cook faster w/o burning).

Wash peppers. Use a sharp nice to cut out the stem and empty the seeds. Slice into strips or cut into pieces, 1-2-inches long.

Peel and slice onion.

Cover the bottom of a large (12-14-inch preferably) non-stick frying pan with oil, but not so much the potatoes are swimming in it. (You’ll definitely need to use more oil–and/or add as needed–to a stainless steel skillet.)

Over medium-high heat, heat oil until one potato dropped in begins to sizzle as soon as it hits the oil.

Add the potatoes and fold until they’re coated with oil. (Add more oil as needed.)  Stir/fold potatoes as needed to keep them cooking evenly. (A silicone/flexible spatula is great for this.) Potatoes should progress from their creamy color to a pink-red brownish color—which would be about the time to add the cut-up peppers and onions.

Use spatula to carefully fold together all the ingredients. Continue cooking, folding mixture as needed so that veggies don’t burn while desired tenderness is reached. (Keep in mind that allowing the veggies to become blackened/caramelized will add some sweetness to your dish.) Add garlic at this point, and cook until golden. (Don’t let the garlic burn!)

Season with salt, pepper, paprika and/or Adobo to taste. If you used canola oil, you might want to top off the dish with a drizzle of (extra virgin) olive oil, but that’s it! Serve with fried eggs or as a side dish for pork chops, chicken—you name it. Leftovers heat up nicely too.

*For a slightly different version—my mom’s—substitute green bell peppers for those above. (You’ll need to cut pieces smaller or cook a little longer; green peppers tend to be harder than the red/orange/yellow variety.)  Skip the onion and add a clove or two of chopped garlic when you’re almost done cooking. Don’t let the garlic burn; unlike onions and pepper, burned garlic doesn’t caramelize. It just tastes bitter.

Next Friday I’ll be sharing my thoughts on historical romance author Mary Reed McCall’s The Crimson Lady, a book I thoroughly enjoyed. I have a few choices for earlier in the week so that one is up in the air yet. One last request: if today’s content spoke to you, please take a moment and click a SHARE button. Thanks so much!

Have a wonderful day and a great weekend!

Joanna