Every New Year’s Day growing up, summer sausage or smoked sausage logs were part of the day’s food staples along with the parade. Cheese and crackers, some fruit, and more chip and dips than anyone should ever consume were aplenty. My favorite: a brick of cream cheese with salsa poured over the top. Still love it today.
Recently, I went on a cheese binge buying spree when I was at Whole Foods in Salt Lake City. I had $50 in gift cards that I won in raffles and now was the time to spend them. Sure, I could have gone conservative and picked up some nice organic veggies or more pantry stables, but that’s just silly. So, cheese it was!
A friend was coming by to hang out and watch another episode of “Orange is the New Black” (he’s seriously behind) and asked what he could bring. Since I was going to provide cheese, crackers, and wine, I suggested a summer sausage would be perfect. Now I was expecting just the typical 9 oz package but he came with this huge, double in length hunk of summer sausage. We made a dent in it that night, but I knew I’d be eating it for weeks to come. I decided I should make a dinner out of it.
When the weekend came, I took that sausage, cut it up, threw in some vegetables and made a quick parmesan cream sauce and tossed it all with some farfalle pasta (bow ties). Dinner was done and delicious. The sear on the sausage was amazingly good. I have never cooked it before so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but I loved the results. As did the other four at the table.
- 1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes; halved
- 1/2 onion; diced
- 1 yellow bell pepper; diced
- 1 zucchini; quartered and sliced
- 9 oz. pkg of summer sausage (or similar); quartered and sliced
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/8 tsp. salt and pepper; +/- to taste
- 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- 1-15 oz can chicken broth
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup cream
- 2 tbsp. flour
- 1/8 tsp. black pepper
- 3/4-1 lb farfalle pasta
- Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain once cooked.
- In a large sauté pan, quickly sear the summer sausage on both sides on medium-high, about 2 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Drain any rendered fat.
- In the same sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat.
- Add all the vegetables, garlic, and the salt and pepper, sauté them for 4-6 minutes or until they have reached the desired doneness.
- Add the Italian seasoning, mix well.
- Return the meat to the pan and combine with the veggies.
- While the vegetables are sautéing, in a sauce pan, whisk together the flour and about 1/4 cup of the chicken broth until smooth.
- Once roux is smooth, add the remaining broth and slowly whisk in the parmesan cheese.
- After the cheese and broth are combined, add in the cream and continue to whisk together, add the black pepper.
- Combine the pasta, meat/veggies, and sauce, Mix well and serve.