Spicy Sausage and Shrimp Alfredo

My husband and I are guilty of being lovers of a good cheese sauce covering pasta or vegetables… Particularly when it is alfredo sauce! Alfredo is easy to make homemade once you understand how to make a rue – once you have the technique down… Fattening cheese sauce can be on your menu far more than it should ūüėČ

  
Spicy Sausage and Shrimp Alfredo

Ingredients:

  • Spicy sausage links (we used 3 Johnsonville Hot Links)
  • Frozen cooked large shrimp (ours happened to be from ALDI…cleaned, deveined, with tails on)
  • 2/3 box of Pasta (bow ties this time)
  • 1.5 – 2 cups Freshly grated Parmesan (we also used some Gouda we had on hand – not necessary!)
  • 2 -3 cups Fresh broccoli florets (chopped into bite size pieces)
  • 1.5 – 2 cups Half and half
  • 2 tbsp Butter (salted)
  • 2 tbsp Flour
  • Cajun seasoning
  • Salt 
  • Pepper

Instructions:

  • Grill sausage on a cast iron pan or in a skillet. We used our large skillet that makes grill marks. Once cooked through, transfer the sausage to a cutting board and cook defrosted shrimp in the same pan, sprinkling with Cajun seasoning on both sides until browned. The shrimp is already cooked… We are just getting nice color and spice. Transfer to a dish. Slice sausage into small slices on a diagonal. 
  • Boil water for your favorite pasta. We almost always make a pound to have leftover pasta for other meals during the week. 
  • Steam broccoli  – we do so using our large pot with steamer insert. Broccoli should be slightly tender but not mushy. 
  • Begin cooking your pasta. 
  • Start the sauce… In a pot, melt butter (about 2 tablespoons) over medium heat  to begin your rue. To that, add about 2 tablespoons of flour and whisk until you get a nice brown color. Add in about 1.5 cups of half and half but keep whisking. You should not be able to see bits of flour. Add in 1.5 to 2 cups of cheese once the mixture is warm. Season with salt and pepper to taste after the cheese melts. Remove from heat or simmer on low heat… Stir to prevent sticking. 
  • Combine everything with your sauce (steamed broccoli, cooked pasta, cooked shrimp, cooked sausage). Taste and season as you like! 

I like diced sundried tomatoes in mine… This dish helps me have one of my favorite meals at home instead of spending a fortune out… And we had 2 huge dinner servings plus about 3 lunch sized portions too. Enjoy!

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Deluxe Italian Sausage Panini

Have you ever watched Sandwich King on Food Network?  He finds and makes uber delicious sandwiches of all shapes and sizes.  Well.. this food creation made me channel my inner Sandwich Kind recently!

I have not been cooking ANYTHING lately which explains my lack of blogging.  After all.. do you really want to know that I heated up a chicken breast and put it on toast with bottled BBQ sauce? No?  Here is a recipe that is more complex, soo decadent, and oh so good!

Deluxe Italian Sausage Panini @ HappyWifey.net

Deluxe Italian Sausage Panini

Makes 4 servings (or however many you can cut the loaf into!)

Ingredients:

  • 1 package hot Italian Sausage Links (or mild)
  • 1 bell pepper,¬†julienned (I used orange)
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • butter, for greasing the pans (or cooking spray)
  • mozzarella¬†cheese (I had shredded)
  • 1 loaf of french, italian, or semolina bread
  • 3-4 cups of fresh spinach

Directions:

  • Cut bread lengthwise and in half once. ¬†I made two larger paninis and then split them later.
  • Cook the sausage links in about 1 inch of water in a skillet (I used cast iron). ¬†When the water evaporates, you can add a little more and continue cooking if you feel the inside of the sausage isn’t cooked through.
  • In a second pan, melt a little butter and saute the peppers and onions. ¬†You can let them sweat! ¬†I like to let them get a little soft.

Deluxe Italian Sausage Panini @ HappyWifey.net

  • Once the sausage is no longer pink, remove from the pan and slice them long ways (butterfly it). ¬†I then add it back to the pan on high heat, to get a little crunch to it. ¬†Slicing it helps it stay on your sandwich!

Deluxe Italian Sausage Panini @ HappyWifey.net

  • Once the sausage is done, you can start making your sandwich… layer the sausage all along your bread bottoms until the bread is covered. ¬†In the pan you cooked the sausage in, cook some fresh spinach until it begins to wilt and get soft.
  • Cover the sausage on the sandwich with peppers and onions. ¬†Top with¬†mozzarella¬†cheese and cooked spinach. Top with the top of the bread that you reserved and your sandwich is assembled! Here is a look at mine before it got pressed…

Deluxe Italian Sausage Panini @ HappyWifey.net

  • To make a panini the old school way, melt some butter on a flat cast iron griddle and place the sandwich on the pan. ¬†Take another HEAVY pan or skillet and press down on the sandwich as it cooks.
  • To get the top hot and crispy, carefully flip the sandwich and repeat the pressing of the skillet. ¬†It takes a little talent but works! ¬†When in doubt… buy a panini press?

Hope you enjoy it :)

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