Category Archives: Italian

Italian Sausage Seasoning

I use this seasoning often to make Italian turkey sausage which I use in my Italian Sausage Lasagna and turkey patties.  I modified the original recipe to reduce the heat factor (replacing red pepper flakes with a dash of cayenne.  I when I heard “this tastes just like Italian sausage!”, I knew we had a winner.

I’ve listed the ingredients as I use them for 2 pounds of ground turkey, with adjustments below for a 1.25 lb which I buy at Trader Joe’s.  For best results, combine the seasoning and meat in advance and place in the refrigerator for at least a few hours or overnight to allow the seasonings to incorporate and intensify the flavor. If you don’t have this time, it still tastes great!

For 2 pounds ground beef or turkey (or other ground meat):

  • 2 tsp. dried parsley
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1-1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 – 3/4 tsp. fennel seed (whole or crushed)
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper, to taste
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. minced garlic (fresh)
  • 1 tsp. minced onion (fresh)

For 1.25 pounds meat (the package size I buy at Trader Joe’s):

  • 1.25 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1.25 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 – 3/4 tsp. fennel seed (whole or crushed; about the same as for 2 pounds meat)
  • 1/3 tsp. paprika
  • dash cayenne pepper
  • 1.25 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp. minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. minced onion

Pasta con Veggies y Garlic

This recipe was part of a wedding gift from family members; the gift also included a large pasta serving bowl. (What a great gift, what a great idea!) They call it Cortez’ Favorite Pasta. It’s very easy and very good! The measurements can be adapted to suit your taste.
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Skillet Spaghetti

Jim acquired this recipe for quick and easy spaghetti from an unknown source during his bachelor days.  He always says it’s even better the next day — and it is!
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Italian Sausage Lasagna

My Italian friend, Maria, taught me how to make real Italian lasagna, which she learned by watching her real Italian mother. I combined her techniques with another traditional recipe from Easy Basics for Good Cooking. The result was this meaty, down-home Italian lasagna. Maria recommended making extra sauce to serve as “gravy” over the top of each serving, so I often double this recipe to have extra sauce on the side.
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