Brats and Kraut Pasta

20191228_185933I know I’ve posted bratwurst and sauerkraut recipes before, but what can I say? I just love this fatty, salty, sour, funky flavor combo. Today’s recipe comes courtesy of a can of real German sauerkraut brought to me from Germany by a friend. I wanted to ADAPT the usual flavors, and turn it into a one-bowl, hearty, pasta based dish for easy leftovers. I took guidance from some of my other favorite recipes and chose to build a “sauce” for the pasta that wasn’t tomato or cream based, but rather closer to a vinaigrette. The vinegar and mustard flavors of the sauce really cut through the richness of the rest of the ingredients and help bring the sauerkraut flavor home. And in case you were wondering if this gets weird after a day or two in the fridge… nope. It just gets better!

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Loaded Waffle Skins

20190929_192138I developed this recipe because I wanted to invent something different. I love loaded potato skins, and I wondered if it was possible to create really thin, really crispy “waffle shells” that could then be filled with loaded mashed potato filling. Unfortunately, the answer was no… but mashed potatoes on top of a waffle was still quite tasty!

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Shrimp and Grits Strata

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I love stratas for their versatility, which makes them a great base for innovation. Here, I ADAPTED my classic shrimp and grits recipe to the strata format, making sure to get all the key flavors in there – shrimp, sausage, tomato, and even grits. I added in some kale to up the nutrition of the dish, and presto, a dish that feels totally new and yet totally comfortable!

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Copenhagen Hot Dogs

20190609_172302I recently got back from my first trip to Copenhagen, Denmark, and in addition to all the bicycles, Scandinavian architecture, and Vikings, I found they have some of the best food I’ve ever had. While much of that food is modern Nordic cuisine (as prepared by Michelin star restaurants that later get featured in Netflix shows), you don’t have to spend 3000DKK to have a great meal. One of my favorites was picking up a hot dog (or two) at one of the ubiquitous pølser (Danish for sausages) carts. When I returned home, I knew I had to recreate them for myself.

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Beer-Braised Sausage and Mashed Potatoes

20190513_203334Continuing with the theme of cleaning out the fridge from the last few weeks, I have had some cans of IPA sitting in the fridge for months now. I don’t particularly like beer, and IPAs are the worst of the bunch, so they weren’t likely to disappear unless I used them for cooking. Enter – beer braising. In this case, bratwurst, which are a natural complement for beer. I just added a few classic German sides – potatoes and sauerkraut -and it was a meal. It may be June, but it sure feels like October!

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Sausage and Mushroom Pizza Strata

img_20190406_202223_552I’m on a real COMBINE kick lately!
I only started cooking stratas within the past couple of years. If you’ve never heard of it, a strata is basically a savory bread pudding. Thanksgiving stuffing (more accurately dressing) is basically a strata. Stratas are great because they are so versatile, are bread-based and thus cheap and able to feed a large group, are even more cheap when you use them to clean out the fridge, and are generally well-loved by all. I like the crunchy edges, but that’s just me.

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