Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Autumn Sausage Casserole

From: Make it Fast, Cook it Slow by Stephanie O'Dea

Family Rating: Different

I would not rate this as a "We didn't like it" or a "You've gotta cook this again!" It was good but falls in the different category probably due to the spices (cinnamon and allspice). The prep work involved cooking a pot of rice and chopping vegetables and meat. I did start the crock pot later in the afternoon than I should have. After an hour-and-a-half the carrots were still crunchy so I cranked up the heat from low to high. It cooked on high for another hour-and-a-half which was too much. The edges were a little brown and crunchy and overall the rice was mushier than I like.

What I'm glad I did:
I mixed all of the spices, sprinkled them over the chopped vegetables and meat, and tossed to thoroughly coat the veggies and meat with spice. The spices were distributed more evenly this way.
I used a granny smith apple which added a nice tart flavor.
I used golden raisins and the kids didn't notice. I don't like cooked raisins and even I didn't notice them.

What I would change:
I would like to try a different type of sausage (used Polska Kielbasa 'cause I love the stuff).
Cut sausage in fourths instead of halves. More likely to get a bit of sausage with each bite.
Slice the carrots thinner to reduce cooking time.
Possibly add the rice later to reduce overcooking.
I think this meal might be even better cooked in a sauce pan. Cooking the onions and carrots together (caramelizing?) would be the trick to taking this from "different" to "We would eat this again."

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