Boy oh boy has it been windy in Central Illinois the past few days! I have been pouring over soup recipes, hoping to find a few new things to try during the holidays when the grandchildren are here. In a couple weeks I will be doing a “Week of Soups” with new recipes every day but this one was so delicious, I couldn’t wait to share it. I had planned to follow a recipe but the mushrooms on sale begged to be added to the pot and before I knew it, I had “tweaked” and was happy with the results! At the end of the meal, we all decided it reminded us of pizza, hence its name! Note to cook: Best prepared while listening to, dare I tell this, C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S music?!?!?!?!?!?!? Six Pence None the Richer was a great beginning to the holiday season!
Pizza in a Pot
1 1/2 pounds breakfast sausage links (not maple-flavored) and cut into 1 inch pieces
2 TBS. olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
6 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
4 14 1/2 oz. cans diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning
6 cups water
1 pound button mushrooms, whole or sliced
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 package frozen cheese tortellini
dried parsley, basil, ground pepper, salt, and crushed red pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese for garnish if desired
In pot, saute onion and garlic with sausage links with olive oil until meat has no pink. (The sausage I used had little grease in it so I had to add the oil as it fried. If the sausage is too greasy, don’t add the oil and drain it well before adding the rest of the ingredients. You might want to add the olive oil anyway for flavor, though.) Add tomatoes, carrots, mushrooms, water, and seasonings. Simmer for 45 minutes. Add tortellini and cook for another 20 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and serve. I think this would be a great crock pot recipe, too, if the meat were pre-cooked and the pasta wasn’t added until the end of the cooking time. It would also be good with green and red peppers and ground sausage or Italian links instead of the breakfast links. I served this with crusty Italian bread and a simple lettuce salad. Thumbs up all around the table and Clay was happy to be taking it in his lunch today!