I ripped this recipe out of the latest issue of Bon Appetit. This was planned to be our fun Valentine's Day dinner, but my husband was in the mood to cook a few days before, so like you do with a tornado... duck and cover and stay out of the tornado's way. Or just avert your eyes from what the tornado turns your kitchen into.
Don't get me wrong, my husband is a great cook, it's just I seem to "help" him and get into his way, or tell him he's doing it wrong. So when he cooks, I leave the kitchen. It's a huge effort in self control for me, and it has done wonders for our marriage for me not to "help" him. And I get rewarded with great dishes like this!
This dish was spicy, but more like an undertone than an upfront knock you on your butt. We set aside some plain noodles for our 3 year old, but he liked the shrimp coated with the sauce.
As for being a frugal-minded cook, the sausage, shrimp, and peperocinis made this more expensive than our regular fare. Although, I did set out my coupon-grabbed Prego and pasta for 20 cents each for my husband to use to compensate.
After we ate this for dinner, there was enough for leftovers for 4 more lunches. I was actually excited to eat this the next day!
Pasta with Sausage, Shrimp, and Peperoncini
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
1/2 cup sliced peperoncini, plus 1 cup liquid from jar
1/2 cup chopped onions
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 24-oz jar marinara sauce
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 pound uncooked large shrimp, peeled, deveined
8 ounces penne pasta
3 tablespoons grated Asiago cheese
Heat oil in a heavy large pot over high heat. Add sausage, cook until browned, breaking into pieces, about 4 minutes. Add peperoncini, shallots, and next 6 ingredients, cook until onions are tender, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add peperoncini liquid, stir until most of liquid is absorbed, about 1 minutes. Add marinara, cream and shrimp. Cook until shrimp are cooked through, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, cook pasta in another large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring often. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid. Transfer pasta and 3 tablespoons cheese to pot with sauce; stir to incorporate. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with basil and additional cheese.
I am trying to get back into the menu planning/cooking groove. Life with a newborn is always unpredictable, so by having dinner either in a crockpot or at least semi-prepared, it saves me from just throwing a frozen pizza in the oven. Get ready for more slow cooker recipes on this blog!
A few months ago, I bought a 2 pound bag of black beans. I had great intentions of cooking all the beans, then splitting them up into 2 cup portions for the freezer, but I just never got around to it. This soup used up about half of the bag, so it looks like I still should go back and cook up some beans. hmmm. Or maybe just make this soup again and that mockingly large bag of beans will go away!
I didn't soak the beans overnight. Whoops. It still made a thick, satisfying, and totally yummy soup. I like my black bean soup topped with onion, and I had two big bowls.
Recipe: Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup
Summary: recipe adapted from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook
1 pound dried black beans, soaked overnight in water to cover, and drained
6 cups chicken broth or water (I used homemade)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
2 medium-size yellow onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chopped celery, including some leaves
1 bay leaf
1 cup diced ham (great for leftovers!)
Salt to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
minced onion, for topping
Use a medium or large round slow cooker. Combine the drained beans and broth in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on High until boiling, about 1 hour. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter or heat the olive oil.
Add the onions, garlic, and celery and cook, stirring a few times, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add to the cooker along with the bay leaf and ham. Cover, turn the cooker to Low, and cook the soup for 7 to 8 hours. Discard the bay leaf.
Puree in batches in a food processor or in the cooker with a handheld immersion blender. (I put a few ladlefuls in a bowl and got non-kitchen gadgety on them with a potato masher...I like whole beans in my soup) Taste to adjust the seasonings. Add some boiling water to thin, if desired. Ladle into soup bowls and serve hot.
Thanksgiving leftovers...I'm calling it Cheater's Turkey Pot Pie: turkey pot pie filling, but serve it with baked homemade biscuits on top inside of cooked over top. Everyone gets the perfect amount of biscuit crunch that way!