Easy Old World Dinners

IN THE KITCHEN

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When you take advantage of a variety of easy-to-prepare or fully-cooked ingredients, you can easily treat your family to a hot, hearty and welcoming Old World meal in a fraction of the time it used to take.

There's no need to buy a long list of special ingredients or to stand over a hot stove for hours like Grandma did, because today's meal solutions can be put together for a memorable family dinner in minutes. Even a busy family will want to enjoy and savor the hearty flavor of these smoked sausage dishes.

Smoked Sausage Oktoberfest

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Serves: Four

1 (16-ounce) package smoked sausage (any variety), cut into 4-inch slices

1 tablespoon butter or margarine

1 medium onion, cut into wedges

2 (16-ounce) cans sauerkraut

2 medium apples, cut into wedges

1/2 package (10 ounces) diced or sliced refrigerated potatoes

1 cup apple juice

Salt and pepper

Brown sausage in butter in 1-1/2-quart Dutch oven or large casserole. Arrange onion, sauerkraut, apples and potatoes around sausage. Top with apple juice; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover tightly and simmer over low heat, stirring once, 20 to 30 minutes or until potatoes test done with fork.

Grandma's Sweet Sausage Medley

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves: Four

1 (16-ounce) package beef smoked sausage (or any variety), cut into 1-inch slices

1 (10-ounce) package frozen baby whole carrots

2 sweet potatoes, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/3 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup water

3 tablespoons honey

1 (8-ounce) can pineapple chunks, drained

Cook carrots and sweet potatoes in small amount of boiling water in covered medium saucepan 10 to 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Drain.

Meanwhile, heat oil in 10-inch skillet; add sausage. Cook 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Drain.

Stir brown sugar, water and honey into sausage in skillet. Cook and stir until bubbly. Stir in carrots, sweet potatoes and pineapple. Bring to boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes.

Flavorful Light Old World Sausage Supper

Preparation and Cooking time: 25 minutes

Serves: Six

1 (16-ounce) package turkey or lite smoked sausage or kielbasa

1 (20-ounce) package diced or sliced refrigerated potatoes

1 (16-ounce) package frozen broccoli

1 (10-ounce) package frozen carrots

1/2 cup celery, sliced

1 medium onion, chopped

1/4 cup vegetable oil

Salt and pepper

Heat sausage or kielbasa in skillet 10 minutes; keep warm. Sauté potatoes, broccoli, carrots, celery and onion in oil over medium heat. Salt and pepper to taste. Place sausage or kielbasa on top when vegetables are tender. Heat additional 5 minutes, covered.

Baked Penne & Smoked Sausage

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Baking time: 45 minutes

Serves: Six

1 (16-ounce) package Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage, any variety

1 (10-3/4-ounce) can cream of celery soup

2-1/2 cups milk

2-1/2 cups (8 ounces) penne, uncooked

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

1-1/2 cups Cheddar French-fried onions, divided

1 cup frozen peas

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Cut sausage into 1/4-inch slices and brown in skillet; drain. Combine soup and milk in 3-quart casserole. Stir in pasta, sausage, 1/2 cup cheese, 1/2 cup French-fried onions and peas. Bake 45 minutes covered tightly with foil. After 45 minutes, uncover and top with remaining cheese and onions. Bake 3 minutes until golden. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Time-saving meal solutions

Stock your refrigerator and pantry with easy-to-use ingredients to save steps and time in the kitchen. Canned and frozen vegetables, quick rice mixes, and refrigerated potatoes and pastas often only take a few minutes to prepare. Keep a few packages of smoked sausage in your freezer where it will keep for two or three months. Savory and hearty smoked sausage can come in handy when planning and preparing meals because it is fully cooked and ready to use for quick and easy meal options.

When you have stocked up on the basics, you'll have many dinner solutions that only take minutes to prepare so that your family can enjoy a delicious and satisfying meal any night of the week.

  • Prepare your favorite seasoned rice mix, then stir in sliced smoked sausage. Heat through for dinner in 30 minutes.
  • Serve smoked sausage alongside refrigerated mashed potatoes for a truly quick meal solution.
  • Add sliced smoked sausage to a quick stuffing mix and pair with your favorite frozen vegetable for an instant meal solution.
  • Stir sliced smoked sausage into prepared macaroni and cheese, then heat through for a one-pot meal that is quick, satisfying and delicious, and minimizes cleanup time, too.
  • Add sliced smoked sausage to a jar of your favorite pasta sauce and heat through. Serve over any cooked pasta and enjoy.
  • Have breakfast for dinner by adding diced smoked sausage to scrambled eggs for a surprise dinner any night of the week.
  • Complete any meal with a prepackaged salad and your favorite dressing or some sliced fruit.

(Recipes from Family Features Editorial Syndicate. For additional ideas and recipes visit www.hillshirefarm.com.)

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