Healthified Sausage and Peppers

I’m not sure if you know this about me, but I’m Italian. Like seriously Italian. (Parlo Italiano!)

For the most part, my family is from the North  – my last name is a city in Northern Italy! So my preference for Italian food leans towards its Northern cuisine. Think pesto, lots of game, olive oil, and lots of vegetables as opposed to red sauces and cheesy pastas. BUT my mom’s side of the family has some Sicilian in it and, come on, who doesn’t love a plate full of what we typically think of as eye-talian food? You will never, ever see me turn down a plate of lasagna. Well, except for the next few weeks….

The only drawback to this delicious, comforting food? It can be quite calorie-laden. So the other night I took it upon myself to conjure up the delicious flavors of one of my favorite dishes without the high calorie and fat content.

I’m not going to lie, I pretty much hit it out of the ballpark with this one.

Coming in at just 275 calories a serving, this is one dish you can definitely feel good about indulging in. The low calorie and fat content leaves plenty of room to serve with a side of your favorite pasta, bread, or other grain. Then again, I was perfectly satiated as-is.

Healthified Sausage and Peppers

Yield: 4 servings

Preperation Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb of chicken sausage, sliced (I chose Smoked Chicken Andouille Sausage that were already cooked*)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
  • 1 cup white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 /2 each of red and yellow bell pepper
  • 1 roma tomato, chopped
  • 1/4-1/2 cup red wine (optional, but it really adds to the flavor of the dish)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parlsey, chopped (this is mostly for garnish, I actually used cilantro because that’s all I had in my crisper)
  • cheese (would recommend parmesan or goat)
  • 2 TBSP canola oil (because you will be cooking on high heat, olive oil is not advisable)

* If you prefer to use uncooked sausage I would recommend cooking them in the pan first, then remove and set aside before starting with step 1 below.

Directions:

1. Place a large saute pan on the stove over high heat and add the oil. Once the oil and pan are thoroughly heated, add all of the vegetables to the pan (onion, mushrooms, bell peppers, tomato, and garlic). Allow to cook for several minutes (about 7-10), stirring occasionally. The vegetables will start to turn slightly black/char – this is good!

2. Once the vegetables have started to blacken, add the red wine, sliced sausage, and pepper flakes. Turn down the heat to medium/medium-high. Cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the sausage is warmed through and the wine has reduced. Continue to stir occasionally.

3. Once the sausage is warmed through and wine reduced, add the cheese and parsley and enjoy!

I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed this meal! The caramelized flavor from the vegetables melded perfectly with the smokiness of the sausage. I didn’t even miss the bread (that’s kind of a lie – this would be AMAZING on a toasted baguette!).

P.S. This is the brand of sausage I used. I would highly recommend it!

I’m A Lucky Lady

Does your boyfriend ever buy you avocados out of the blue?

Yah, I didn’t think so. —> Spoiled <—

Honestly, this is almost better than flowers. Almost 😉

Not wanting to put them to waste, I whipped up a batch of guacamole this week to add to my salads in lieu of my usual vinaigrette.

I may or may not have stolen this idea from the burrito bowls at Chipotle.

Brilliant decision. Rounded out with some leftover tilapia, this was a winner.

And now, off to enjoy the weekend. Anyone doing anything special? I plan on doing some spring cleaning and hopefully spending some time bumming around the beach.

My Weekend In A Single Photo

Valentino helping me sweep the patio.

We were unapologetic bums. And it was GLORIOUS.

 

 

A Special Deal Just For Me

Or not.

Vons (aka Safeway) recently rolled out a new program – “Just for U” which offers you paperless coupons/discounts based upon what you typically shop for. I recently signed up and I have to say, there have been some great deals so far (I scored a free package of large eggs!), but it looks like they still need to fine-tune a few things. A special, personalized price on jalapenos just for me?!

I’m gullible, but not that gullible.

(Okay, I still bought a few….a girls got to have her guacamole!)

Doing Okay

Day 1 of no bread (gave it up for Lent) is down. Phew!

For someone who really, really loves bread this is a big feat.

So what does a girl eat when her standard bread and cheese/flatbread/wrap is out of the question??

Eggs. Lots of eggs.

I was actually surprised how full this kept me. I didn’t even require a mid-morning snack. I’m sure this had to do with the sauteed veggies (zucchini, yellow sqash, roma tomato) that I added to the mix.

Don’t forget the sriracha.

I think I could get used to this.

I Told You So

Putting the Fat in Fat Tuesday? You bet I did!

Apart from the cookies, let’s just say I did some good work at Taco Tuesday. I made my way through two bowls of chips and salsa, shrimp and cochinita street tacos, and a TJ dog (that would be a hot dog, wrapped in bacon, and covered with jalapenos, salsa and other goodies. It’s insane).

I was sporting a serious taco/chip belly. Thank goodness for the $2 tecates to wash everything down!

If you should ever find yourself in downtown San Diego anytime soon, do yourself a favor and hit up La Puerta for some serious tacos and margarita action. I hadn’t been there in quite a while, and I’m so glad it was in the cards last night. It does get pretty busy, but lucky for us the downtown Mardi Gras festivities seemed to clear the place out. Fine by me!

How have I never noticed the bar code on Tecate cans before? Clearly my friend Mike is in shock too! (I told him to look like " here...ha!)

Ah yes, it was Mardi Gras. We (my friends and companions for the evening – Mike, Stephanie and Karl) didn’t go to the Mardi Gras party in the Gaslamp. Instead we made our way over to the Hard Rock Hotel to see Built to Spill in concert.

It was so much fun! Built to Spill has been around for a while, and honestly, I haven’t really listened to them in a while, but man did they put on a show last night! They might be a little older (aren’t we all?) but they didn’t skip a beat. It was pretty crowded but I somehow managed to run into two of my brothers friends, both of whom I had met 2 years ago. Always fun to run into a familiar face! (Hi Zack and Ryan!)

Oh yah, there was also this:

That would be a dog in a motorized mini-car jamming out to LMFAO’s ‘Sexy and I Know It.” With a light show. Loved it.

It was a very good night. I even came home with a party favor from the Hard Rock Hotel bar. Okay, maybe not. During the concert I finished my drink and decided that I didn’t want to lose my spot by disposing of it at the bar. So in the purse it went. I had intended to drop it off after the concert, but, well, you know how it ended.

Go Chargers?

Putting The Fat In Fat Tuesday

I have two boxes of Girl Scout cookies (thin mint and shortbread) in my cupboard and I have just now decided gave up bread and sweets for Lent. There’s only one solution.

hello, lover.

I must eat every last cookie before tomorrow.

Duh.

Some Weekend Eats and a Vow

If you know me even just a little bit, you know I LOVE to eat. Be it home-cooked or at a restaurant, I can shovel down some serious grub.

Here are a few of things I enjoyed this weekend….

On Saturday night, Adam and I enjoyed a quiet night of dinner, dessert and a movie.

From left to right: 1 - Broiled tilapia with lemon and herbs, sauteed vegetables, steamed rice, and bread. 2 - chocolate mousse (used this recipe)

Mental note: make more fish! It was a nice change of pace from the burgers and pizza I’ve been stuffing my face with. It was also nice to have a night in. The night before was spent imbibing in a few too many cocktails and something called Carne Asada Mac and Cheese.

Sunday night we made our way over to the Joint for Tapas and Sushi.

From left to right: 1 - mixed olives 2 - shrimp and grits 3 - filet mignon kebabs

Oh my word – what a fantastic place! Apart from the service, which was a little on the slow side, the food was absolutely fantastic. They also have a great (and cheap!) craft beer selection. We will definitely be coming back for more tapas AND sushi. (We tried the “fiery roll” – nice and fresh and very satisfying)

So, onto my Vow. I realized whilst out to dinner on Sunday that I take WAY too many pictures of food. I came to the realization that I’d much rather stare into the eyes of my beau/friends then take pictures. It’s also annoying. Therefore, unless it’s some sort of spectacular dinner/treat/occasion, I think I’m going to lay off the snapshots and keep the phone/camera in my purse and my attention on what counts – the people around me.

Also, I’m going to try to eat a little healthier for the next two weeks (my jeans are getting a little snug) so you won’t be missing out on anything exciting. Unless of course you think grilled chicken and steamed vegetables is exciting…I really hope you don’t.

Hope everyone else had a lovely weekend? Anyone eat anything special? (I might be laying off the pics, but doesn’t mean I can’t live through others!)

 

 

Motivation

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Time to lace up my running shoes!

This Must End

I have lost all sense of control.

Prepkitchen Burger with Remoulade, Mahone, Heirloom Tomato, Bacon & Fried Egg

Veggies? Fruit? Unless they’re on a burger or slathered in butter they have had no part in my life right now.

Diet starts tomorrow?