Hi Friends! Long time, no see!
Also long time, no cooking around here. The symphony season (and thus the driving season) has finally hit a short pause. I had every intention of posting recipes from the road these past two weeks but life got a little too crazy.
I flew from Tampa to Kansas City then drove to Wichita, back to Kansas City, to Minneapolis, up to Duluth (and back & forth Duluth to Mpls 4 more times) back to Kansas City and finally flew back to Tampa all in the last two weeks. It was glorious and fun but exhausting too.
Not much time for cooking in that schedule. I did make a some tried and true Idiot’s Kitchen favorites (Sweet Chili Glazed Salmon, Maple Braised Pork Chops, Chicken Marsala, and Quick Shrimp & Grits) for my parents while I was at home but didn’t have a chance to explore any new recipes.
One Pan Baked Smoked Sausage is a recipe that my sister suggested for our new category of Weeknight Wonders! These are super easy recipes with a few simple ingredients that you can get on the table fast. I could definitely have used this last week.
Here’s what you need:
Smoked Sausage (I used 2 packages), Small Red Potatoes, Bell Pepper (only one), Onion, Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper
This recipe is a bit of a riff on our every popular Baked Italian Sausage with Peppers & Onions. I was planning to roast some potatoes but then got the idea to put the potatoes in the pan for a one pot meal.
If you’re trending in food blog circles (which I am not) you might call this a Tray Bake. Have you heard this term? Suddenly putting food together on a pan or baking sheet is called a Tray Bake. I’m not sure where this term suddenly came from but since I am unable to type BAKE as a NOUN, there goes that trendy idea.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Thinly slice 1 pound of small red potatoes, one bell pepper (any color other than green will do…I avoid baking green peppers as they get very bitter)…
and 1 large onion.
Place all the veggies in a large baking pan (I used an 11 x 13 pyrex) and add 2-3 Tablespoons of olive oil.
I didn’t measure the oil, just give it a few good glugs out of the bottle.
Toss the veggies together to coat them evenly in the oil.
Grab your favorite smoked sausage. I have two packages of the beef & pork combo but you can also find varieties with just bef or even turkey. Each package is slightly under 1 pound.
If the sausage comes in one large piece, cut each sausage into 3 links and poke a few holes in each sausage with a small, sharp knife. This keeps the sausage from exploding in your oven and also allows all those sausage juices to dribble down onto the potatoes.
Add some freshly cracked black pepper over the top. You can also add salt but for me the sausages are salty enough.
Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 20 minutes then turn the sausages over to brown on the other side.
Because the sausage comes pre-cooked, you are only warming and browning it while the vegetables cook and become tender.
Depending on the thickness of your potato slices, the vegetables should be tender in about 30-40 minutes total. If it cooks a little longer (mine was in the oven for almost an hour), that’s okay and will only help the flavors meld together.
Add a quick green veg like some steamed/nuked broccoli or a green salad and you’re good to go!
Another good thing about this recipe is that it is infinitely expandable so you can cook as much or as little as you need. It does make really good leftovers though so I cooked this for Jim (2 links) and me (1 link) with 2 leftovers.
It’s a Weeknight Wonder! A One Pan Wonder! A tray bake…if you must.
It’s quick. It’s easy. It’s dinner with no fuss. Perfect for getting back into the swing of things!
Here’s the recipe: Adapted from Paula Kenney