Thursday, March 22, 2012

Healthy Housewife Dinner

Tonight's dinner is slated to be Smoked Sausage and Pasta. There are two versions of this dish. The lazy (I say that with love, some of my dinner posts are lazy housewife dinner after all) version involves cutting up the sausage, boiling the pasta, and dumping it together with a can of cream of mushroom soup and milk.

The healthier version involves making your own cream of mushroom sauce. It's really much easier than it sounds. You make a simple white sauce, add in mushrooms (and onions, and celery since I'm making it myself!) and voila. Better for you than the creamy soup out of can--I'm not judging, cause seriously, some days, I'm just dumping that stuff in. But, if you have 5 minutes and the motivation (this is KEY) you can make a healthier version pretty easily.

Recipe:

Smoked Sausage (I buy the all beef one.)
Rotini pasta (you can use whatever shape you have on hand.)
Flour
Milk
Butter
Salt/Pepper
Mushrooms
Onions (optional)
Celery (optional)

Start water boiling and get that pasta going. Cut up the smoked sausage and sautee it in a pan. Remove the sausage from the pan and use the drippings to cook up the mushrooms and onions and celery. Make the white sauce (recipe to follow.) I use the same pan that the veggies are in. Drain pasta. Add to pan. Stir. You can top it with some parm if you like (my kids are all secretly mice and love cheese on EVERYTHING.)

White Sauce Recipe:

Basic White Sauce from scratch.

In a saucepan over a low/low-medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter or margarine, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 2-3 tablespoons white flour. With a fork/whisker, mix and heat until bubbly without burning. You want this to become a paste. Next, stir in about a cup of milk and keep stirring on medium heat until thickened. I’ll keep lifting the saucepan up off the burner as needed to keep from burning, as I’m stirring the sauce. The key is to keep stirring.

Remove from heat and use in your recipe. Easy.

Want to make it a cream of mushroom, celery, cheese, etc? Begin by sauteing your veggies in the butter and then continue with the white sauce. This way you can make a fresh cream sauce which always tastes great.

Ideas: fresh mushrooms, celery, onion, cheese(Just add cheese after the sauce is made and melt it down while the sauce is still hot)

No fresh veggies? Try adding some celery salt or onion salt to taste. This works great too.


*From crockpotguys.com.


And, since this is doesn't really qualify as SKINNY...


A Four Minute Workout I usually do this workout a couple times a week, on days where a.) I've just not been really active, or b.) days where I ate more sweet stuff than I should have. :) It's fast, it will get your heart racing and tone places you weren't working before--I know because I'm always sore after it, so I'm not working those places doing the other things I do (Zumba, basketball with the kids, tag, etc.)



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