Jumat, 26 Desember 2014

Oven-Roasted Sausage and Vegetables




Oven-Roasted Sausage and Vegetables

serves 12 ( about 1 c. = 6 points +)
  • 13 oz. Hillshire farm turkey smoked sausage
  • 2 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 2 bell peppers, sliced
  • 2 c. onion, sliced
  • 4 large Yukon Gold potatoes, chopped ( leave skins on)
  • 3 T. olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Spray a large jelly-roll pan with nonstick spray. Place sausage and veggies on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Stir twice during baking time.

Cooking Tips : 

Preparing A Family Inspired Holiday Dinner

Sometimes we can all use a little advice in the kitchen. There are so many ways to develop flavors and textures in foods. Ask 10 people how to make a pie and you'll get nine different answers. Learning these tips will give you new ideas for cooking meals that you've made a million different times.

When cooking any recipe, use the best ingredients that you can afford. Splurge a little on imported cheeses or better quality meats when you can, so that you can experience a restaurant, quality-tasting meal at home. To enhance the experience even further, try to creatively plate up the meal with a little thought, for something different every now and then.

Learn to use your hands when cooking (after washing them thoroughly first of course!). Hands are the most sensitive yet versatile cooking utensil you will own. They can be used for mixing, measuring and testing whether a product is cooked enough. A cake, for example, will show that it is done by springing back when touched lightly with a finger on its top.

Garlic is one of the more pungent odors that you will ever experience, and you will want to have tricks to get rid of it as soon as possible. Here is a suggestion, after you cook something with garlic, rub your hands on the base of your stainless steel sink for a minute to eliminate the pungent odor off of your skin.

When trying out a new marinade or seasoning, test it on a small piece of meat before you cook the entire meal. Dishes like meatballs, meatloaf and hamburgers need to be seasoned carefully. Therefore, you should never cook the whole cut of meat after seasoning it. Try cooking a small sample before making all of it. After you do this you can either completely cook it or add more seasoning as you see fit.

As you cook your meal during the course of the night, make sure that you taste it at several different points. This will allow you to pinpoint exactly when it is done, so that you do not run the risk of overcooking it. Tasting your food is important to achieve the quality you desire.

To take the metallic taste out of canned pumpkin pie filling, heat the filling with all of your spices first. Simply mixing your filling with the other ingredients and then baking traps the metallic taste in your finished pie. But by heating your pumpkin filling alone with the spices first, you release the metallic taste of the filling and simultaneously imbue it with the richer taste of spices like nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger.

Save your butter and margarine wrappers to use when baking. The wax paper that butter and margarine is wrapped in just happens to be the perfect size for greasing pans or rubbing onto a potato before popping it in the oven for baking. Save wrappers butter-side to butter-side in a closed storage container, so it stays fresh for your baking needs.

A salad spinner can be a great addition to your kitchen. It will help to spin the water out of your lettuce so your salads aren't soggy and droopy. Salad spinners are inexpensive and can be found at most discount stores. They're also small so they store easy.

You should use your freezer bags more than one time. You need to store your meats or vegetables in regular storage bags and then place them into freezer bags so that you can use them repeatedly. Freezer bags are very expensive and this will cut back on your costs each month.

When sautéing vegetables using Pomace olive oil is a great substitute for butter that should be used. The Pomace olive oil is very affordable and will give vegetables a mild flavor that is quite delicious. You can purchase the Pomace olive oil at any Middle Eastern grocery store. It is low in carbs and in price which makes it extremely appealing.

When you are cooking, it is possible to substitute honey for sugar in several recipes. First, begin by using an amount of honey that is half of the amount of sugar called for in the recipe. If you find that the final product is not sweet enough, you can add more honey the next time around.

If you are making mashed potatoes, return them to the pot after you have drained them cover the pot tightly and then let it steam for about 5 minutes. By doing this, the potatoes are able to dry out, which will make them mash into the perfect texture. It will also soak up butter and and cream easier.

Save the delicious taste of summer by drying tomatoes yourself. Simply cut them into 1/2 half inch slices, or cut lengthwise for Romas. Lay your tomato slices across a cooling rack with the cut-side facing up, and salt them lightly. Place the cooling rack on a cookie sheet and dry in a 190 degree oven for up to 10 hours. They can then be stored in plastic freezer bags in your freezer. Another option is to store dried tomatoes in a jar that contains fresh, flavorful herbs and olive oil. Refrigerate and use within 2 weeks.

After cooking, always let your meat rest before serving it. This is especially true when you pull meat from a hot grill. Moisture that keeps your meat tender is sealed within it. When you cut steaming hot meat, the steam that rises is actually the moisture leaving the meat. When you let meat "settle" for at least 15 minutes prior to serving, the moisture and tenderness is preserved.

If you don't know much about the vegetable or fruit that you are handling, familiarize yourself with it. You might be surprised of the possibilities you will learn about for food. Taking the time to learn before starting to cook will leave you with a much happier experience in the kitchen.


Learning never ends when it comes to cooking. These tips are just a jumping off point for your exploration into the vast world of foods. Keep learning and trying new ideas and techniques so you can see what works for you. We have to keep our eyes always open for new ways to do the ordinary.

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