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Sausage, Mushroom & Pasta Skillet

I actually made this yummy dish tonight and liked it so much I had to blog about it right away! This recipe was really supposed to be Sausage with Peppers and Pasta however the hubs doesn't like cooked peppers so I had to make some subsitutions. I took out the peppers and added onion and mushrooms and added some extra italian seasoning and red pepper flake for a kick. Honestly, this dish was so easy to whip up and was very flavorful! It was a nice change of pace from the basic spaghetti with meat sauce (althought I love that dish too!). As always, I don't really measure but I used the recipe as a measurement guideline.

Sausage, Mushroom & Pasta Skillet
Adapted from

3 cups rigatoni pasta, uncooked
1 lb. Italian sausage links
1 onion, chopped
Packaged sliced mushrooms
1 can (14.5 oz) Italian style diced tomatoes, undrained
1 sm. can tomato
Italian seasoning
Crushed red pepper flake
1 each green, red, and yellow pepper (optional)
Parmesean cheese

1. Cook pasta as directed on package, just shy of al dente. Reserve about 1 cup of the starchy cooking water.

2. Meanwhile, remove sausage from casings and cook in a large skillet on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add onions and mushrooms (and peppers) and cook until soft. Add italian seasonings and crushed red pepper flake. Add can of diced tomatoes, can of tomato sauce, and about 1/2 cup of pasta water. Cook about 3 minutes or until heated through.

3. Add pasta to sausage mixture and mix well. Let pasta cook about 5 more minutes to absorb the sauce. Serve and top with parmesan cheese.


Sloppy Joe Biscuit Cups

The picture is not that attractive but trust me on the taste...Delicousness!

Kurt is my faithful taste-tester for all new things that I try. For the most part it's a pretty good gig (I am a pretty good cook after all!), but every now and again I try something that is not so delicious. Luckily, this was not one of those days!!

I have been craving a Sloppy Joe for quite some time. I grew up on Sloppy Joes and they always have a special place in my heart, filed under "comfort food." Now that I'm a parent I like them for the sheer fact that they are easy to make and don't take very long. Kurt, on the other hand, is a big fan of Sloppy Otto's (instead of a red sauce you use sour cream and sour kraut). For the past year or two when I say that I am going to make Sloppy Joe's for dinner, Kurt sort of grumbles that he'd rather have Sloppy Otto's. And me, being the most amazing wife in the world, makes Sloppy Otto's (again, they are easy and quick) and makes my husband happy.

Well I saw this receipe online at and thought that it was such a cute idea I knew I had to try it. So tonight I just made the Sloppy Joe's I've been craving so long. When they were done I actually had to give Riglee her bath and put her to bed so I told Kurt to go ahead and eat. 10 minutes later he barged into the bathroom and practically screamed that he LOVED these Sloppy Joe's! I thought he was making fun of me but he was absolutely right....these 'lil suckers are scrumptious!! Easy...check. Quick...check. Delicious...check! I mean, what's not to like here?

Sloppy Joe Biscuit Cups
I made some changes which are listed as well

3/4 lb. lean ground beef (I used a pound)
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (I just used about a teaspoon of minced garlic)
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper (I omitted)
1/4 cup ketchup (I probably used 1/3-1/2 cup)
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
(2 tbsp BBQ sauce)
1/8 tsp pepper
(1/2 tsp red pepper flakes)
1 tbsp brown sugar (I probably used a little less)
1 can (16.3oz) Pillsbury Grands Homestyle Buttermilk biscuits
1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used cheddar)

1. Heat overn to 375 degrees.
2. In a 10 inch skillet cook beef, onion, garlic, and bell pepper over medium-high heat until beef is thoroughly cooked, drain. Return to pan and stir in ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, pepper, red pepper flakes, BBQ sauce, and brown sugar.
3. In the meantime, separate dough into 8 biscuits. Flatten out each biscuits and place in an ungreased regular-size muffin cup. Firmly press dough in bottom and up sides of each cup, forming a 1/4 inch rim.
4. Spoon about 1/3 cup beef mixture into dough-lined cups. Sprinkle each biscuit with 1 tbsp shredded cheese.
5. Bake 17-20 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown and cheese is melted.


Venus de Milo Soup

I've been dying to make soups this winter and for some reason they seem so daunting to me. I found this one on and thought it was easy enough and a good place to get my feet wet in the world of making soups. The soup was pretty good but lacked some seasonings which I would definitely add more of next time. I also used a few cartons chicken broth instead of the condensed broth and water. I served it with flakey biscuits which I definitely did not make from scratch (thank you Pillsbury)! It made a huge batch so I was able to freeze enough for a couple lunches later on.


1 lb. ground beef
2 (14oz) cans condensed chicken broth
2 (14oz) cans water (use empty chicken broth cans)
4 cups of water
1 (1 1/4 ounce) envelope Lipton French Onion soup mix
1 (14oz) can diced tomatoes (I used 2 cans of petite diced tomatoes with italian seasoning)
1 (12-16oz) bag frozen vegetables
1/2 cup small pasta (shells, orzo, etc - I used dried tortellinis)
Seasonings (I added salt and pepper and a bay leaf)

  1. In a large pot brown ground beef stirring to break it up. Drain well.
  2. Add broth, onion soup mix, water and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes. Add frozen veggies and seasonings and simmer 10 more minutes.
  3. Stir in pasta and cook about 8 minutes more until pasta is done (I partially cooked my tortellini before adding to the soup).


Lamb Lollipops?!

So on December 26th my brothers, David and Mikey, came over for a little family dinner! David has been working for the UW system directly under one of their head chefs. He's always wanted to be a chef and always makes delicious food. Obviously he is the one who gets stuck cooking for all of us. David decided dinner would be lamb and potatoes and I was in charge of the veggie. Now, lamb would probably not be on my top 3 choice of meals (they would probably be pasta, pasta, then beef......with pasta) but this lamb was ahhh-mazing! I don't know exactly what he put on it but he had some sort of panko/herb crust and it was cooked perfectly and was very tender. I mean, this lamb was really really good, even Kurt loved it!

And ohmygoodness the homemade mashed red potatoes with a cream and pea sauce. David just heated up some cream and added frozen peas with salt and lots of pepper. This was so incredibly simple but added so much flavor and depth to the meal....why didn't I think of this before?! I know I don't have any recipes for this meal but I just had to show it off!!