What’s for dinner: Beer-Braised Sausages with Warm Potato Salad

I wish I didn’t read as much as I did.

Specifically, I wish I hadn’t read the back label of the Italian sausages I picked up for tonight’s dinner, because as soon as I saw that each one had 44% of the recommended daily allowance for fat, I knew this was going to be an exercise in deprivation.

This dinner is by far the heartiest of the week — I can say that having polished off Friday’s as well — which is probably not surprising, given that it involves the aforementioned sausages, potatoes and beer.  Compared to the week’s earlier healthy but relatively spartan offerings such as fish and mushrooms and chicken and greens, this was downright heavy.

But so delicious.

Basically, it involves cooking the sausages and onion in a heavy pot, then adding the beer, potatoes and water for another 20 minutes. Season the potatoes and onions with red wine vinegar and a little parsley, keep the sausages warm and reduce the pan sauce until it’s thick, then return the sausages and coat.

We had five sausages and four servings. The mathematical solution would have been to cut the fifth into four pieces and add one chunk to each plate, but instead I put it aside and stared at it because it was so tasty.

“You had salmon for lunch,” I told myself. “And vegetables. You could totally have that second sausage.” I thought about it randomly the next day, sitting there vulnerable for eating. (But I didn’t budge — instead, I packaged it aside and sent it off with Mr. Brooks for his work lunch on Friday.

Cost of ingredients: $11.57. (If you already have pale ale in the fridge, knock off $4.) I already had olive oil, salt and pepper, red wine vinegar and, thanks to this night, parsley.

Substitutions: Regular olive oil instead of extra-virgin, which I save for recipes where the fresh flavor really matters.

As easy as they said? At 75 minutes, it’s a little more time-intensive than the usual recipes. But easy.

How’d THAT go over? So tasty.

Would I make it again? Yes, but on a night when Mr. Brooks isn’t on the timetable to make it to work by 7 p.m.

WHAT SAM WORE: 02-19-10
The sweatshirt: Zip-up hoodie, on sale at Old Navy.
The shirt: University of Montana T-shirt, from Gart Bros. in Billings.
The pants: Yoga pants by Perfetto, a hand-me-down from my ex-boyfriend.
The shoes: Customized Converse All-Star slip-ons,
a birthday present from Funny Michael.

2 responses to “What’s for dinner: Beer-Braised Sausages with Warm Potato Salad

  1. Glad I found this. I am going to make this Recipe tonight and read another review that said it was Nothing Special. I will try it after all after having read your words! Thanks!

    • Nothing special? Them’s fighting words! 🙂 No, seriously, I think part of the reason I liked this so much was because of the previous superlean, not-so-thrilling meals that I was just happy to have something hearty again. When you think about the ingredients, it really isn’t that different — but the fact that it’s sausage and potatoes pretty much guarantees success as far as flavor goes. It won’t win points for originality, but you will push away from the dinner table and think, as my friend Amy spells it, “nom nom.” (For some reason, I always pictured it as “num, num,” like “nummy.”)

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