Friday, January 25, 2013

ONE STOP POT


I'm definitely not the cook in our house, nor do I pretend to be (as you'll see in my next entry) but I love to learn new things, and cooking is an arena that has always fascinated and terrified me.  I often feel the same way about preparing a meal as I do walking into a crowded gym...totally overwhelmed, completely judged and just not that into it!  I love a great magazine, though, and a few of my culinary favorites like Cooks Illustrated, Bon Appetit and Food and Wine never disappoint and often cater to the supermarket checkout chef like me (willing to try but easily freaked out by long, complicated recipes).  This months Bon Appetit is a great example of simple recipes for the masses, including my favorite (and tonight's dinner, thanks to Joe) of One-Skillet wonders (the idea here is to create a meal using only one pan, less mess, less fuss, more YUM!).  Tonight's adventure took us diving into a delicious bowl of hot Italian sausage and white bean stew.
THE ITALIAN JOB:
The ingredients are simple: 2tbsp olive oil, 1 lb Spicy hot Italian Sausage, 1 large onion thinly sliced, 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped, 1 sprig thyme, 2 15 oz cans cannelloni (white kidney beans), rinsed, 2 cups chicken broth, kosher salt, ground pepper, 5 0z baby spinach (we get the bag salad version).
Once you've got all that assembled, you're one step closer to a tasty treat...
Heat oil in large skillet over warm heat.  Add sausage and cook, turning occasionally, until browned and cooked through (15-20 minutes).  Transfer sausage to plate.
Reduce heat to medium.  Heat one more tablespoon oil in same skillet.  Add onion, garlic and thyme.  Cook until onion is softened (about 5-8 minutes).  Add beans and broth and cook (8-10 minutes). Add spinach in handfuls and cook about two minutes.  Slice sausage and fold into pot, adding water to thin if desired.  Serve in bowls and add freshly grated Parmesan cheese and sprinkle of olive oil to serve.