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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Rigatoni With Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage

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I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted a recipe, but with work and the remodeling that’s going on, It’s really been hard for me to find the time to blog lately. I’m here now so here it goes. I start by pouring 1/2 a cup of low sodium chicken broth into a saute pan, and bringing that up to a slow boil. I take a fork and prick all the sausages so they will get a head start cooking on the inside which helps this dish along.

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I simmer this on the stove for around 20 minutes so I can start prepping my veggies. I chose 1 each of red, yellow, and orange bell pepper, 2 zucchini, 1 large sweet onion, 1 pint of grape tomatoes that I halved, and 3 cloves of garlic that I minced. For the veggies I diced them all relatively the same size so they would cook evenly.

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At this point the sausages were ready to be seared on all sides, so I drained them from the chicken broth, and transferred them into a larger non stick saute pan that I had getting hot on the stove. I then started to sear them on all sides.

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I then transferred them onto a plate to cool before slicing. Now in the same pan that the sausages cooked in I’m going to cook all the veggies.Going forward, I add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan while I have it on med to med high heat. I add 2 tablespoons of tomato paste and 2 tablespoon of fennel seeds. I let those bloom in the oil until its nice and fragrant.

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So now I start adding the veggies, starting with the diced onion, then the peppers, then the minced garlic, and finally the zucchini. I like to sprinkle a little Kosher salt and black pepper after each vegetable goes in to season each layer.  I don’t actually measure the salt and pepper, I just sprinkle a little each time I add a new vegetable in to the pan and stirring them consistently so they get some good color on them.

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At this point I add in the grape tomatoes and stir them through before adding my liquids for the sauce.

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Now to release all the bits from the sausage and veggies from the bottom of the pan, I’m going to deglaze with 1-1/2 cups of white wine and some chicken broth.

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These liquids are going to make the sauce for this dish. After adding the white wine I let that reduce by half, so while that’s happening I can slice the sausages on the bias and add those in before adding 2-1/2 cup of the chicken broth.

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As you can see the wine had reduced and the chicken broth has been simmering with all the ingredients, so now it’s time for the rigatoni. I had a large pot on the back burner filled with salted boiling water waiting for me to add the pasta in. I follow the directions on the box but take the pasta out a few minutes before because when I add it to the other ingredients it will finish cooking there.

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Now for the fresh herbs, my oregano and basil. I will chop these up and add it to the dish after the pasta goes in and I’ve turned of the heat. Oh a good tip is to always save 2 cups of the starchy pasta cooking liquid to add to the dish if you need to because the pasta will absorb a lot of the liquid that already there.

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Finally after the pasta has been add along with the herbs, I transfer everything onto a big serving platter and shave some Parmigiano-Reggiano all over the top.

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Garnish with some fresh basil and who wouldn’t want this for dinner.

 

 

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Melissa In LA, California

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While Melissa was in LA, she stopped in at a few hot spots, One was Sage a plant-based bistro. Their style of food is Gourmet, Raw, Vegan, and Organic. Here’s a peek into this restaurant.

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This is their vegan tuna sandwich.

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The tuna is made from jackfruit, pretty interesting.

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This is their sage avocado bruschetta and fried artichoke hearts.

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Wow!, those dishes look so good, even for a meat eater like myself, I would definitely love to try each one of those. For dinner, they all decided on French cuisine. Republique Restaurant in LA. This place is Amazing!!  Here is a look at this restaurant.

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Here is a look at their menu.

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This dish is the roasted broccoli and cauliflower salad at Republique.

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Their Charcuterie Room is displayed for customers to see.

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Growing up, my father did a lot of traveling for his job and had the opportunity to dine at some of the best restaurants all over the United States. I’m so happy that my daughter is able to do the same thing today.

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French Vanilla Cupcakes

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I have to say that in your local grocery store, there are so many varieties of box cake mixes that are really good. The brand of cake mix I’m partial to is the French vanilla box mix.

If you need a dessert quick,  this one works in a pinch.

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I have to say that in your local grocery store, there are so many varieties of box cake mixes that are really good. The brand of cake mix I’m partial to is the French vanilla (16.5-ounce box). If you need a dessert quick,  this one works in a pinch. I love to make the box mixes and make them really special, and I’ll tell you how. Whenever I make a chocolate cake mix I’ll add some brewed coffee (cold) to the batter, It just enhances the chocolate flavor so much, and you don’t taste the coffee. The French vanilla (16.5-ounce box), however; I add a vanilla bean, because I just can’t get enough of that vanilla flavor, plus I love to see the black specks of vanilla throughout the batter. The other ingredient I use is ricotta cheese. The ricotta cheese gives it extra moistness and richness you just can’t get from anything else. So all you do for this recipe is follow the directions on the box and add the caviar of one vanilla bean, and 4 ounces of ricotta cheese to the batter. This will take a box cake mix and make it extra special. After the cupcakes have cooled completely remove them from the pan and place them on a cooling rack.

Instead of frosting, I do something just a little different,  I dip them in cinnamon sugar. All I do is melt 2 sticks of unsalted butter and pour the butter into a bowl, and in another bowl, I mix 1 cup of sugar with 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon. Take your cupcake and dip the top into the warm melted butter and then into the cinnamon sugar mixture and that’s all there is to it. I promise you won’t be able to eat just one because they are so darn good.

My secret ingredient is Ricotta cheese. Now when I make these I go ahead and make a double batch, one is just not enough, they are that good.  So for a double batch, I put 1 teaspoon of rose water in the wet mix, 2 teaspoons of real vanilla extract, and 8 ounces of ricotta cheese for a double batch.  You are not going to believe how moist they turn out, and the rose water just perfumes the cupcakes. Then I melt 1 stick of unsalted butter and make a cinnamon sugar mixture.  When the cupcakes have cooled a little I dunk the tops into the melted butter and then into the cinnamon sugar.  I bet you can’t eat just one.

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Pork Tenderloin On A Bed Of Cannellini Beans

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This is a dish I tested out on friends and family. I was really happy that this dish turned out perfect. I always try to test a recipe more than once before posting it for my readers. The link below will take you right to this recipe.

 

Pork Tenderloin On A Bed Of Cannellini Beans

 

 

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