On Thursday evenings, you can typically find us wandering around the Gorge Grown Farmer’s Market at the HR Middle School. We always look forward to hitting up the food carts and shopping for local goodies with our friends. My new BFF, coincidentally, is the dude who hands out cheese samples. Seriously, who doesn’t love Free Sample Guy?! Heaven.
Snoop through our basket and you will likely find tons of fresh produce, tubs of ridonkulous almond butter, and this pork sausage from Rough Swan Ranch. My friend raved about it, so we gave it a shot. And now, we may need to purchase a separate freezer, just so I can store this stuff throughout the winter. This ain’t no Jimmy Dean, folks. It is absolutely worth the few extra bucks as it: A) comes from happy pigs and B) is freakishly delicious. It’s fair to say that we are addicted.
Technically it is labeled as “breakfast sausage”, but I have been using it to cook up “dinner skillets” all summer long. Variations have included white cannellini beans and grilled corn. Our garden potatoes are ready, so lately I’ve been using those. Come this fall, you’d better believe that I’ll toss some sweet potato into the mix! My husband has proclaimed, on more than one occasion, that THIS is his favorite meal….EVER. It’s simple and rustic – total cowboy food.
SAUSAGE + POTATO + KALE SKILLET
1 Lb. bulk breakfast sausage (Rough Swan or any other QUALITY sausage)
1 medium onion, diced
2 large cloves of garlic, crushed
dash red pepper flake
1 Lb. baby red or yukon gold potatoes, cubed
1 bunch kale, shredded (ribs removed), yields approx. 4 cups
salt and pepper to taste
PREHEAT oven to 425 degrees. In a cast iron (I use my 10 inch), or any other oven proof skillet, brown the breakfast sausage over medium heat. REMOVE sausage with a slotted spoon and transfer to a paper towel lined plate. ADD the diced onion to the pan, WITH the sausage grease (don’t look at me like that, just DO it), and saute until soft. CRUSH the garlic into the onions, add a dash of red pepper flake, cook until fragrant. ADD the potatoes to the pan and coat evenly with onions and garlic. SEASON with a bit of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, then let the potatoes cook for about 2 minutes on the stove. TRANSFER the skillet to the oven and let the potatoes bake for 18 minutes. CAREFULLY remove the skillet from the oven (uh, don’t grab the handle). ADD the shredded kale and breakfast sausage to the skillet and mix it all together. The skillet will be HOT, so keep that mitt on! RETURN the skillet to the oven for about 7 minutes longer, until the kale is wilted to your satisfaction (it should have some crispy edges). BAM! Giddy up.
Variations: Depending on what is in season, sub any of the following for the potatoes: white cannellini beans, roasted corn, sweet potato, etc. The sky is the limit!