Monthly Archives: January 2011

Move it!

Here’s a bizarre but true story: There are currently five strange men in my house clawing through all my stuff. Touching things. Moving things.

Weird, right? Totes. (Yeah, I said totes. Don’t worry, I’ll do us both a favor and kick my own butt later for being annoying. Totes just felt right. It’s been a rough week.)

So yes. Guys in my house. I’m at a coffee shop because I can’t stand to watch. The thought makes go all squirmy inside, like thinking about spider and snakes and other creepy crawly slithery things that give me the heebies. If I try really hard, I can not think about it. Then all of a sudden it creeps back into my head. My brain tries to disguise it too, making me think about it  by telling me not to think about it. That sneaky brain! I’ll be minding my own business, enjoying a particularly engrossing passage in my latest novel of choice and then BOOM, a thought…”Hey, don’t think about those weird guys in your house and the several boxes of girly unmentionables you left under the sink they are probably touching RIGHT NOW.”

Uggggh. Awkward.

Why, you ask, would I allow such things? Because we’re moving. This is it. it’s really happening. New owners take possession of our current house on Monday. I’m gonna go out on a limb and guess they don’t  want to see my girly unmentionables left under the sink either, so SOMEONE has to take care of that. And when your Kind of a Big Deal*, you don’t have to pack your own things. You have people do that for you. You have guys.

*Aside: I’m not a big deal. I’m…no deal. I’m “Oh, sorry, I didn’t see you there.” Also known as “What’s your name again?” Eric might be kind of a big deal. But don’t tell him I told you, he doesn’t like to talk about it. 😉

Although between stuffing my face with bonbons and watching soap operas while my people took care of everything, I did manage to pack my own underwear drawer. I mean, really. That’s a given. Please. 😉

In all seriousness, this move stuff? Sucks. Eric’s company is helping us out a ton and it’s still a stressful and draining experience. I will be over the moon when it’s finally over and we settled on the other end. For the last week, I’ve had to give up my two favorite things. Cooking and TV. We cut the satellite service and I had to stop buying groceries, less I wanted these movers to toss vegetables and cheese in a box and load it on a semi.**

**True. We’ve heard stories. Apparently these guys will pack ANYTHING, including but not limited to, the stuff in your fridge and whatever happens to be hanging out in the garbage can. Best to just not have it in the house.

THE HORROR! THE TORTURE! I cried a little inside every day. Mostly about missing the shows I like. Not so much about eating nothing but cereal, take out pizza, and peanut M&Ms for three days straight. I guess I was okay with that. You know, for the cause.

In an effort to keep myself away from the grocery store where I may be unable to stop myself from being pulled in by the allure that is goat cheese, I’ve done lots of pantry raiding and deep freezer diving over the last few weeks. When I realized I had everything on hand to make this wonderful sausage dish, I did a little happy dance for a couple reasons. 1.) I’ve made it before and it is so comforting and satisfying, perfect for when your life is collapsing in chaos all around you (drama queen, much?) 2.) It’s also super quick and easy. Again…good for chaos and what not. And 3.) It’s never been blogged and that is just not right! Since I obviously had to cancel that date with the Duggars marathon on TLC, I knew I’d have a little extra time on my hands to share this deliciousness with you. 🙂

This is my kind of meal – dark brown, caramelized, sweet and savory deliciousness. There is something about deep, dark sauce that I just can’t resist. It just screams flavor to me. It’s cooked in one skillet on the stove top making it pretty much the perfect one dish meal. The original recipe calls for sweet Italian sausage but I only had hot on hand I really enjoyed the bit of heat in the background with the sweet onions and braising liquid. You can serve it with just about any starch you have on hand, pasta, potatoes, rice. I bet it would be delicious with polenta. Couscous would work too. Whatever you’ve got!

I guess you could call this my last meal. What a way to go! WIN! My Iowa kitchen is officially closed. I hope the next owner enjoys it as much as I did! It’s hard to say when I’ll see you around these parts again because, as of today our house is empty and we don’t actually have a place to go on the other side yet. It’s a long story and I’ll spare you the details but just know all my kitchen stuff is likely to be held hostage in the back of a trailer (be strong, young KitchenAid Mixer! It will be okay!) for the next 30 days or more while we figure this out. (Thanks Short Sale House we fell in love with, you’ve been AWESOME so far!)


Stress-level…RISING! I wish I had some sausage. That sure would help things.

BALSAMIC BRAISED SAUSAGE & ONIONS (Recipe source: Originally from Rachael Ray 365 No Repeats, as seen at What’s Cooking, Chicago?)


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 links of sweet Italian sausage
  • 2 medium onions, sliced thinly.
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cups chicken stock or chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons honey


  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage links and brown on all sides. Remove the sausages and set aside.
  2. To the same skillet, add the onions, thyme and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook the onion mixture, stirring frequently, until they begin to caramelize and brown, about 10 minutes. Add the balsamic vinegar, chicken stock , and honey and stir to combine. Bring the liquid to a simmer, then add the browned sausages back to the pan and braise uncovered until they are cooked through (10 to 12 minutes) and the sauce has reduced by half.
  3. To serve, plate the sausages (whole or sliced) with the starch of your choice and top with the onions and braising liquid.


One Year Ago: Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecakes – with pretzel crusts!
Two Years Ago: Vanilla Cake Batter Ice Cream

Obviously, I don’t believe in cutting out the sweets after the holidays. My apologies. 😉



Filed under pasta, sausage