Sausage Stuffed Onions

Recipe 7 of 103

I like sausage and I like onions, so this recipe seemed to make sense. redonionsApril requests that you use her fresh sausage recipe but as I struggle to source the proper meats for this project I opted for store-bought for this recipe. Ideally you’ll want to get a spicy italian pork sausage.

Here is what you will need

pre heat oven to 400°

4 medium red onions ( about 8 ounces each) peeled. stem ends trimmed, root ends trimmed but left intact

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

maldon salt

1 head garlic

small handful of fresh thyme sprigs, plus 1 teaspoon leaves

1/2 cup fresh italian sausage (remove from casings)

1 cup heavy cream

Ready your onions, rub them all with olive oil and saltonionprep1Arrange them in a single layer in oven safe casserole or stock pot. Peel the outermost layers of the garlic, so the cloves are exposed. Add garlic, sprigs of thyme and 1/3 cup of water to potonionprep2

Cover and bake in oven for about an hour, until onions are softened. You should be able to insert a knife in the center of the onion easily. Remove onions to a baking sheet and let them cool enough to handle, keep oven on.onionsoftWhen the onions are cool enough to handle use a small spoon to remove the centers of the onions. Don’t remove too much and or too little. Stuff the onions with the uncooked sausage, set aside.onionstuffed

Keep the centers of the onions adding them back to the pot the onions cooked inonioncenters

Squeeze the soft garlic cloves from the whole head of garlic and add to the onion centers, as well as the cream, teaspoon of salt and thyme leaves. As you see here I spaced out and added more sprigs, avoid this and you won’t have to fish out the stems later after they’ve cooked. Bring the mixture to a boilonionjizzAdd the stuffed onions to the boiling mixture, liquid should come half way up the onions, adjust as needed by adding a bit more water or removing some of the liquid.onionsimmerReturn to oven uncovered, bake for about 40 minutes, basting every 10-15 minutes.bastingCheck seasoning, add salt if needed. April says to bring the pot to the table and dig in. I felt like the broth was screaming for some kind of grain so I cooked up some farro. oniondoneThe broth is amazing, the onion to sausage ratio was a bit off for me, I would like more sausage less onion. Onions overwhelm this dish, so if you’re not a big fan of them you might pass on this one. The spicier the sausage the better to balance the sweet of the onions. The broth is the star for me, I dropped my immersion blender in the pot after removing the stuffed onions and ended up with a silky, rich soup to die for.

Zinfandel Braised Pot Roast


So while we were camping in Mexico my friend Jenny was watching our Lily and our home, she’s rocks like that.
When we arrived home after the desert off road, high wind, earthquake journey, we found in our fridge a tupperware filled with Zinfandel Braised Pot Roast. It was amazing, delicious, yummy and so welcoming. I asked Jenny to guest blog the recipe so you all could enjoy the nectar that is her Zinfandel Pot Roast. Take the time to cook it and love it, you will not regret it. Thanks to Jenny for sharing

Zinfandel Braised Pot Roast

The world of braising is new to me…as I just started reading “All About Braising” by Molly Stevens. While Sarah and James went camping in Mexico and I watched out for Miss Lily and chilled at their sweet home. Braising my first recipe also marked me making my first pot roast. I also made sure we had a few bites for them to try–the night they came home from the dust and wind of Guadalupe Canyon, MX. 

And here is the second round of braised pot roast. You will need a large dutch oven for this size roast, we used a 7-quart.
Pot Roast Ingredients:
1-5 1/2 to 6 pound boneless beef chuck roast
(preferably top blade roast)
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 lb. chopped bacon or 3-4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 large yellow onion, coursely chopped
2-3 medium carrots, coursely chopped
2 celery stalks, coursely chopped
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
1 1/2 cups Zinfandel wine
1 cup beef, veal, or chicken stock
3-sage sprigs, large 3-4 inches
2-3 flat-leaf parsley sprigs, 6-8 inches 
8-10 black peppercorns
Parchment paper
Glazed Carrots Ingredients:
2 1/2 to 3-pound medium carrots
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh sage
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
Pinch of sugar
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

Start by tempering the pot roast meat-let it sit out of the frig for an hour or so.
Tie meat using kitchen string then season with salt and pepper.
Miss Sarah just tied that roast up so fast–the technique still escapes me 
but the author Molly says there is a method, I just haven’t quite figured it out.
The goal is to prevent the roast from falling apart while it is cooking–as it braises for 3 hours.
I recommend 3-4 ties around the widest part of the meat and 2 ties wrapped around the length of the brisket.
Heat oven to 300 degrees.
Cook bacon in dutch oven-then remove from pot, set aside.
Brown meat in bacon grease over medium heat, making sure all sides are browned.
Meanwhile-chop celery, carrot, and yellow onion for the aromatics. Peel and smash the garlic–
(Sarah and I always use more garlic than the recipe says–we like it! Above amount is doubled already ;*)
Remove the brisket and set aside on a large plate that will collect any juices the meat releases.
If there are any charred bits of meat remove them with a damp paper towel.
The crusty good nuggets of drippings are the beginning of a delicious braising liquid, so leave those be.

Now it is time to create the braising liquid. 
Turn the heat up a bit to medium-high. Add garlic, onion, celery, and carrots to the pot and season lightly with salt and pepper. 
Let the vegetables cook until lightly browned and add the wine.
With a wooden spoon scrape the goodies of carmelized beef off the bottom of the pot. Bring this liquid to a boil then let it reduce by half, about 6 minutes.
Add beef stock, return to a boil and let it reduce about one third-approx. 5 minutes more.
Let the braising begin— 
Return the meat to the pot with the bacon, sage, parsley, and peppercorns. 
Cover with a piece of parchment paper, pressing down so that is almost touches the meat. The edges of the paper should hang over the edge about an inch. 
Set the lid in place.
Transfer the pot to the lower third of the oven-let braise for 10-15 minutes–check the braise liquid at this point.
Make sure the liquid isn’t simmering too vigorously. If it is lower the oven heat by 10-15 degrees.
Halfway through the braise turn the pot roast.
Now you have plenty of time on your hands; pop in a good movie and pour a glass of that lovely zinfandel you are braising with. We like to play this dice game called 10,000–
Prep your carrots while the pot roast cooks. I like the idea of nice long pieces but you can cut coins or chop pieces too. Chop the sage and parsley at this time.
At the 3 hour mark, check the pot roast for tenderness. It should literally be falling apart. Remove the roast and set aside on a platter, cover loosely.
Strain the cooking liquid–pressing down to extract as much juices as possible. 
Discard the aromatics and pour into a medium saucepan.
Once the liquid settles, skim off any fat that pools. 
Measure out a half cup for the carrots and set aside.
Heat butter and oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Add carrots when the pan is nice and hot.
Season with salt and pepper–shaking and stirring to brown the carrots. 
Once carrots start to brown a bit, add the braising liquid. Cover partially and reduce heat to medium. 
Cook for 6-8 minutes. Uncover–bring it back to a boil. Add vinegar, sage, sugar, and parsley. 
Cook until liquid is reduced to a glaze. Taste for salt and pepper.
Heat the braising liquid over a medium-high heat. Boil for 1-2 minutes to concentrate the flavor. 
Taste and if needed add a dash of salt and pepper. This is a luscious sauce–it has been simmering for 3 hours. The concentration of flavors is intense and layers of love have formed.
Cut the strings off the pot roast and cut in slices. Serve on a large platter. Carrots are our side dish. This time we paired it w/ Sarah’s yummy Butter-Parsley Tators–but you could serve mashed tators or tators au gratin.

So ya’ll–This was a pretty neat experience…I have so much respect for Sarah for doing this blogging thang way more than I–she rocks the food party for sure and we love that..thanks for checking out the blog–try braising it is complex with steps but so rewarding.

Oh the Irish in me !

St. Patrick’s Day is tomorrow, so I whipped up some Irish grub to celebrate the day of green, or the day of drinking or the day to cook Corned Beef & Cabbage !!
I come by my Irish blood honestly, meet my Grandpa Jim May, he’s not with us anymore but he will always be in our hearts.

This is a picture of him when he was 16, attending Morgan Park Military Academy in Chicago. He went on to WWII in the Pacific Theater on Guam as a Marine Raider, first guys off the boat. He was shot and recovered at the Naval Hospital in San Diego, where he meant my Grandma Dorothy Harle, then came my Mom, then came Me. When I was little, he ran bars downtown SD, he’d cook big pots of stews for the bar patrons and let me sit on the bar and eat as many Maraschino Cherries as I could. I always remember him cooking. So I dedicate this meal to him. Miss you Grandpa

Corned Beef w/ Cabbage, Potatoes & Carrots.
4 to 5 lb Corned Beef ( I got the uncured one at Trader Joe’s, AMAZING )
1 whole head of cabbage
2-3 potatoes quartered
6-7 small fresh carrots/ chopped big
1 bottle of beer
Put the beef and the spices from the bag in a dutch oven, add 1 beer  – your favorite flavor, I used a Fat Tire, from Colorado, not Irish but very tasty. Besides I needed to save all the Irish beer for Black and Tans.
 Add water until the beef is covered. Cook at 325 for at least 3 hours. Check the beef for the fall apart factor, the meat should be extremely tender and cut easily with a fork. Remove the meat from the pot and let rest on a plate for carving. Add the veggies to the pot and return to the oven for 20 minutes or until veggies are cooked but still slightly firm.
Slice up the meat and serve the veggies on the side with some good stone ground mustard.
Enjoy, it’s yummy.