Yes, Virginia, you CAN have an Italian recipe that does not include pasta and marinara!
I learned this cooking method from Joe. Joe is the lovingly temperamental proprietor of Joe’s Italian Kitchen in Boone, NC. Back when I hosted a local TV show, the segment I filmed with Joe was one of my favorites! He reminds me so much of my Italian grandfather, who could be tough when he needed to, while being a lovable teddy bear-type grandfather. Joe’s 86-year-old father still come into his store every day to help make their treasured family recipes.
(Joe isn’t sponsoring this post, I just think it’s such a cool story, and the food is REAL Italian food!)
Joe showed me the method, but I’m taking liberties with the ingredients. I couldn’t remember what all he used, bit mine tasted pretty good!
Italian Sausage and Onions
(Joe used Green Peppers too)
- 5 links Italian Sausage
- One medium onion
- A handful of fresh Rosemary (you can experiment with the herbs)
- Kosher salt or sea salt to taste
1. Put the sausage in a saute pan, which can be used in the oven. Cook on medium heat about 5 minutes on each side, or until lightly browned.
2. While the sausage is cooking, chop the onions and strip the rosemary from the stem. Gently crush the rosemary just a little bit to release the flavor and aroma. It’s OK to add the Rosemary in chunks, because you may not want to actually eat all the rosemary. It adds a wonderful flavor to the dish, but it can get overwhelming.
3. After the sausage browns, add the onions and rosemary to the pan. It will look like this:
4. Now, put the pan into a 375 degree oven for another 15 minutes or so, until the sausage is cooked through and the onions are caramelized. I served ours with rice and pinto beans, because that’s what we had in the pantry!
And lastly, ENJOY! What do you think?
Also, this meal was under $5.00 and fed our family of 5.
Sausage: $3.38 (on sale because today was the “sell-by” date)
Rosemary: Basically free- it came out of my garden
Rice (1 cup dry): $0.50
Beans (1 cup dry): $0.50
Grand total: $4.88