Friday, November 16, 2012

Sausage and Peppers

Making your own sausage meat is actually really easy. Putting it in a casing may require some special equipment, but who says sausage always has to be in a casing? I checked the ingredients on a package of sausages in the meat department of my local grocery store and guess what was on there, in addition to a host of nitrates? CORN SYRUP! Ick! Whyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!????

Now, there are some organic brands you could buy which don't contain any of those yucky additives, but they're usually more expensive, and unfortunately my grocery store doesn't carry them. Buy why bother when you can make your own with some ground pork and a few spices?!?!

You may remember my recipe test of Melissa Joulwan's Italian Sausage Eggplant Strata last year. I like making her Italian Sausage Seasoning Mix and keeping it on hand for times such as these. It turns plain ground pork into sausage in a snap!

This spice mix is more than you will need for the sausage and peppers recipe so save the extra in a small airtight container or empty spice bottle.

Italian Sausage Seasoning Mix
  • 4 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 Tbsp dried Italian herbs
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 tsp fennel seed (optional) - you should use this if you have it, though, it really gives the meat that sausagey taste
In a medium bowl, crush the dried parsley and Italian herbs with your fingers or a fork to release their flavor. Add the black pepper, garlic powder, paprika, salt, red pepper flakes, and fennel seed. Mix with a fork.

Sausage and Peppers
  • 2 lb ground pork
  • 3 Tbsp Italian Sausage Seasoning Mix
  • 4 bell peppers (mix of sweet red/yellow/orange and green), cut into chunks
  • 2 medium onions, cut into 1" pieces
  • Sea Salt
  1. With your hands, mix the Italian Sausage Seasoning into the ground pork, then crumble the pork into a large saute pan and brown the meat on the stove over medium-high heat. Remove the meat to a plate or bowl with a slotted spoon (leave the juices in the pan).
  2. Over medium-high heat, saute the peppers and onions in the same pan using the fats from the ground pork as your "oil". Season generously with salt.
  3. When the onions and peppers are tender, add the meat back to the pan and mix well. Cook another minute or so until well-combined.

mmmm... spices

amazing that a few spoons of this will turn ground pork into sausage

This is the leftover...

Boom. Sausage.

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