Monthly Archives: May 2023

Recipes with Stuffed Shells: Creamy sausage stuffed shells with zucchini

Image by <a href="">Peggy und Marco Lachmann-Anke</a> from <a href="">Pixabay</a>Recipes with Stuffed Shells: Creamy sausage stuffed shells with zucchini

Stuffed shells are one of those dishes that seem really complicated and taste like they took hours to make, but overall, they’re pretty simple to cook up. With that said, a lot of recipes with stuffed shells tend to call for red sauce to cradle the shells while they bake. Certainly, there’s nothing wrong with those recipes with stuffed shells, but we thought we would try something different.

That’s why this recipe with stuffed shells features zucchini and a creamy béchamel that thickens while it bakes.

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 zucchinis sliced thin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 box stuffed shells
  • 4 tablespoons garlic powder (divided)
  • 1 pound Italian sausage
  • 1 package cream cheese
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons white pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Coat a baking sheet with olive oil and arrange the zucchini on the baking sheet.
  3. Cover liberally with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake until soft, about 15 minutes.
  5. While the zucchini is baking, boil the stuffed shells in water seasoned with salt and 2 tablespoons garlic powder.
  6. Also, brown the sausage and mix with the cream cheese and the rest of the garlic powder. You can use as much or as little of the sausage grease as you want.
  7. When the shells are done, drain them and stuff them with about a half tablespoon of filling.
  8. As you fill each shell, put them in a baking dish that you greased with cooking spray.
  9. After all shells are filled, top with the zucchini.
  10. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat and add the flour.
  11. Pour in the cream and let it start to bubble, then add the white pepper and garlic cloves. Stir to mix.
  12. Pour the sauce over the shells and top with shredded mozzarella and grated parm.
  13. Bake for 25 minutes and serve warm.
  14. Enjoy!

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Cooking Italian Sausages in the Oven

Image by <a href="">takedahrs</a> from <a href="">Pixabay</a>Cooking Italian sausage in the oven

If you’ve ever been to Jasper’s in Kansas City and had one of their grilled Italian sausage sandwiches, you may be asking yourself why anyone would want to cook Italian sausages in the oven. While there is something to flame kissing an Italian sausage, I kind of prefer cooking Italian sausages in the oven. For my money, cooking Italian sausages in the oven is faster, there’s less clean up than cooking Italian sausages on the grill, and they still taste delicious.
Of course, like with most things, there’s an art to cooking Italian sausage in the oven and a method that will get you better results every time. Of course, that method takes longer than just cooking the Italian sausages in the oven, so we’ll talk both methods.

Cooking Italian sausages in the oven

You will need:

  • 8 Italian sausages
  • Enough vegetable oil to cover the bottom of baking dish
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Italian sausage method #1: Quick and tasty

  1. Preheat your oven to 350.
  2. Grease the bottom of a baking dish with the vegetable oil and arrange the sausages so that they don’t touch.
  3. Use a sharp knife to cut small holes in the top only of the sausage.
  4. Sprinkle with salt and liberally coat with black pepper
  5. Bake until the sausage is cooked all the way through, about 12-15 minutes.

Note: In case you are wondering, normally you would want to pair Italian (olive) oil with Italian sausages, but I prefer vegetable oil in this case because it won’t burn.

Italian sausage method #2: More steps, but tasty

  1. Preheat your oven to 450.
  2. Grease the baking dish with a thin layer of vegetable oil.
  3. Put the baking dish into the oven and let it get very hot for 10 minutes.
  4. While the baking dish is charging, use a sharp knife to cut small holes in the top only of the sausages.
  5. Sprinkle both sides with salt and liberally cover with black pepper.
  6. After ten minutes, use an oven mitt or hot pan holder to open the oven and pull out the dish.
  7. Arrange the Italian sausages cut side down and cook for one minute. This should give you similar browning to a grill.
  8. Flip the sausages and reduce the heat to 350.
  9. Cook for 12 minutes or until done all the way through.

Slap on a bun, toss into a sauce or eat as is. Whatever you do, enjoy!

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Great… I Have Kale, Now What?? Three Easy Kale Recipes

Are you excited for kale season?

If you’re like most people, you’re probably not excited.  Also, if you have a garden, are part of a CSA, or have been to a farmer’s market, more than likely you now have some kale and have no idea what to do with it.

The sad fact is that kale got a bad rap a few years ago because it started showing up in everything because it was trendy and healthy and within no time we all had kale fatigue.  For as much as I personally love kale, I don’t need it in absolutely everything.  So it was with some relief that I bid kale adieu and moved on to the next big thing which I think was spinach or maybe acai?

Anyway, even if the kale trend passed us by, it never left grocery store shelves, farmer’s fields or my little garden.  So, we might as well figure out what we’re going to do with it.  I mean it is still healthy for you and, if done right, can be pretty tasty.

Kale Recipe #1 Sautéed Kale

Okay, this is the easiest way to make kale.

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups of kale, chopped roughly
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 pinch red pepper flake


  1. In a skillet over high heat, add the olive oil and let it warm for about thirty seconds.
  2. Add the garlic and sauté for 15 seconds.
  3. Add the kale and a healthy pinch of salt.
  4. Sauté the kale until it starts to soften and then add the red pepper flake.
  5. Cook the kale until it wilts and looks wet.  Serve hot.

Kale Recipe #2 Kale Chips with Sea Salt and Tajin

Turn on your oven low and bake the kale until crispy.

You will need:

  • Enough oil to cover the bottom of your baking dish.  This will vary based on the size of your pan.
  • 2 cups of kale, cut into roughly two inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoons sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons tajin
  • (optional) lime wedges


  1. Preheat the oven to the lowest temperature you can
  2. Cover the bottom of your baking dish or baking sheet with olive oil, cooking spray or vegetable oil
  3. Arrange the kale on the baking sheet and sprinkle liberally with sea salt
  4. Bake the kale until it is dry and crispy.  This will vary based on how low your oven temperature can be set.  Start checking at 30 minutes.
  5. When the chips are done, immediately sprinkle with tajin.
  6. When you are ready to eat, you can also sprinkle them with lime juice.

Kale Recipe #3 Kale Chicken Parmesan Soup

Yeah, it may be a little warm for soup, but this dish is light and healthy.  Perfect for summer.

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 chicken breast, diced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups of kale finely chopped
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons grated parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons lemon


  1. Melt the butter over medium heat in a soup pot.
  2. Add the olive oil and let it get hot for about 20 seconds
  3. Add the chicken and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook the chicken until all traces of pink are gone.
  4. Pour in the kale and let it sauté for about a minute to get the cooking process started.
  5. Pour in the chicken broth, increase the heat to medium high and bring it to a boil.
  6. Cook the kale until soft, about 10 minutes.
  7. Add the parmesan and lemon juice.  Stir to incorporate and serve.

Okay, now that you know what to do with that kale, get out there and cook it.  Enjoy!

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New Restaurant Saturday – T&M Creperie

T&M Creperie CrepesIt’s New Restaurant Saturday!

I mean, it happens every Saturday, but we just posted our New Restaurant Saturday recap episode for March 18, 2023.  That was a crazy day for us since we had just gotten back to Kansas City from Orlando.  We’d hopped a 6am flight from Orlando and went from 80 degree weather to 19 degree weather and I was still in shorts and a T-shirt.

T&M Creperie was the comfort food we needed

Once we slept off the weather shock, we turned to T&M Creperie for a hit of sugar and when were ready for real sustenance, we went to Romecito Cuban Restaurant before heading home to sleep.

Listen to the podcast episode out now!  Enjoy!

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