Thursday, February 4, 2010

A "Must Try" Recipe...

I am a self-proclaimed Melissa D'Arabian fan, to the core!

Will and I watched last season's The Next Food Network Star every week hoping that she would make it to the end. Sure enough, she did.

Not only did we love that we learned a new tip or trick every time she opened her mouth (we would literally rewind the DVR to make sure we heard her right and then look at each other and say "No way!"), but the fact that she was a stay at mom made me love her even more. She was a woman taking her future into her own hands and tackling her dreams!

I record her show on the Food Network "10 Dollar Dinners", but I had let them stack up in the DVR unwatched. So while I was waiting for Will to come to bed the other night, I watched a couple of episodes. That's when I watched her make this...

Sausage And Roasted Vegetable Penne an episode called "Penne For Pennies".


It looked so yummy!

But it was a dish that stood way out of our comfort zone. Will and I are not fans of tomatoes, zucchini or mushrooms. I was willing to make the recipe and try it (based off how yummy it looked on TV), but convincing Will was going to be a different story.

Surprisingly, he agreed to try it. So we headed to our local Produce Market and bought all of the fresh vegetables that the recipe called for.

It was so easy to make and it tasted absolutely delicious!

Tomatoes, zucchini, mushrooms, and all!

Admittedly, we were a little skeptical about how it would turn out because of the lack of sauce in this dish, but the flavor was sooo good. It was fresh and healthy and even better tasting than we could have hoped.

You must try it. You must.


Sausage & Roasted Vegetable Penne


1 sweet onion, cut into wedges
1 medium zucchini, sliced in 1/2 lengthwise
1 red bell pepper, cheeks removed
1/2 pound button mushrooms, stemmed
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Kosher Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, washed and dried
2 sweet or hot Italian sausages, thinly sliced or casings removed
1/4 cup white wine
12 ounces whole-grain penne, cooked according to package instructions, 1/2 cup pasta water, reserved
Freshly grated Parmesan, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a bowl, toss all the vegetables, except the tomatoes, with 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Arrange on a baking sheet and roast, until caramelized, about 30 minutes, turning vegetables halfway through the cooking time. In a small bowl, add the tomatoes and the remaining olive oil and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and add to the baking sheet, at the halfway point of cooking, to caramelize.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, add the sausage and saute until cooked through. Turn up the heat and deglaze with white wine. Once the vegetables are cooked, cool slightly, then coarsely chop. Add the vegetables and any pan juices to the sausage in the skillet. Toss in the cooked penne, adding reserved pasta water, if needed, to moisten. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve in bowls topped with Parmesan.


The bonus is that it truly is as easy to make as it sounds!

I'm not sure if I have convinced you to try it,

but I sure am ready to make it again!

P.S. I am posting this at:

Things I Love Thursday


Jenn said...

I love her and DVR her show also!!! I haven't tried any of her recipes, but I have started using bacon more & storing it in my freezer. She has down to earth, tried and true dinners that work. I don't think she sleeps!! :)
You have a fantastic blog!

La TempĂȘte said...

I haven't heard of her, but I am off to google her now! Thanks for the great recipe, it sure sounds delicious.

Heather said...

I love Melissa D too! Her recipes are great and easy to make! =D

La Petite Gallery said...

That looks and sounds Delicious.
I am putting you on my side bar.
First time here. Good post.


LuLu said...

Thanks for the recommendation, i haven't tried one of her recipes yet now i will!
it's everything i love,

Susan said...

I saw that episode and wanted to try it but have yet to. Thanks for the recommendation. We are going to get snowed in this weekend and that sounds like a great dish to try!

Trish/MJ said...

I love Melissa! Thanks for sharing the recipes!!! I had kinda forgotten about her after FNS, but need to check her out!!!

Melanie said...

I love the Next Food Network Star but I have never watched any of the people that win. I just like seeing who wins. I never thought that she would go all the way but I was happy for her to win. I would never get my husband to eat the peppers but it does look like a great recipe.

Karla Doodlebug said...

Thanks for the recipe! I found your blog through a link and have added you to my favs, if for no other reason than my name is Karla with a K too!!!! Love it!

(pssst....mostly I love your blog bunches...but your name rocks also!)

Meghann said...

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Melissa D!!!! The things she does in the kitchen are simple but make things taste sooo good. We have used several of her recipes and I end up loving them.. not one has failed me! I was also very pleased that she had won and am happy that she has gotten better in front of the camera... at first it was almost painful to watch her... now not so much!

Lorie said...

I loved her too! Thanks for the recipe. I am going to give it a shot!!

Kristine said...

Well, you talked me right into it. I saw on The Next FN Star but haven't seen her show.
PS, love your blog!

Carolyn @ My Backyard Eden said...

I like her too! The recipe looks great to me since I love all the ingredients.

Your blog is looking pretty BTW!

Kelly said...

I am so in love with Melissa. I made the dish you mentioned couple of weeks ago and my family just raves about it. I can't wait to make this dish again soon.

Olivia said...

I just tried this tonight and it was so yummy! Thanks for posting!

thediaperdiaries said...

I have recently became a Food Network junkie, but have not watched this. This recipe looks AMAZING. Totally making it this week. Thanks so much!!

alwayswithme said...

I've never heard of her, but just the way you described the recipe (and I don't like tomatoes, mushrooms or the other veggie either) but I'm going to file this away to try and I'm going to check her out. Thanks for sharing!