I am a lover of sweet potatoes. I think I've tried them every which way, so when I saw this Sweet Potato Casserole with Sausage recipe, I knew it was meant for my kitchen!
There are not a lot of ingredients in this casserole, but prepping ahead of time was a big help. And is it just me, or do others despise peeling and cutting sweet potatoes? Anyway, as the "sweets" were boiling, I diced up the mushrooms and onion and shredded the cheese. The sweets took only 20 minutes to get to fork-tender. I mashed them, added a big ol' lump of butter, and salt-and-peppered to taste. (I could have eaten them just like that, but I restrained myself.)
Next, I threw the sausage into my skillet and cooked until no longer pink. (The recipe calls for sweet sausage, casings removed, but I used bulk sausage. Much easier!) I was supposed to set the sausage aside and drain all by 2 tablespoons of fat. I didn't drain any of the fat (I doubt there was 2 tablespoons worth in there). Into the skillet went the mushrooms and onions.
For the apple requirement, I used 2 Braeburn apples. While the mushrooms and onions cooked, I peeled, cored, and sliced them. I sprinkled them with some lemon juice to prevent browning.
The vegetables were done in no time, and then it was time to layer it all into a 13x9-inch baking dish sprayed with olive oil. Half of the mashed sweets went in, followed by half of the onion and mushroom mixture. On top of that went half of the sausage and all the apples. Then another layer of mashed sweets, onions and mushrooms and sausage. I covered it with aluminum foil and put it in the refrigerator for the next day.
To pick up where I left off...I took the casserole out of the refrigerator about an hour and a half before putting in the oven. I wanted to take some of the chill off. It went into a 350° oven for 35 minutes. Then I topped it with the shredded cheese and put it back in the oven for 8 minutes. Afterward, I let it sit under the broiler for 2 minutes. That part is not in the instructions, but I often broil a dish topped with cheese once it is done cooking.
After cooling it for 15 minutes, I covered and packed it up in my handy-dandy casserole carrier. I brought it to work for my co-workers to try and though my car smelled of sausage all the way home, it was worth it!
Sweet Potato Casserole With Sausage (found on page 198 of The Garden-Fresh Cookbook)
- 6 large sweet potatoes, peeled and quartered
- butter, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 pound Italian sweet sausage, casings removed
- 2 cups fresh mushrooms, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 4 medium red apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat the over to 350°F. Grease a 13x9-inch baking dish. Put the sweet potatoes into a saucepan, cover them with water, and bring them to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are fork-tender. Drain, then add the butter and salt and pepper. Mash the potatoes and set aside.
Crumble the sausage into a skillet over medium heat and sauté until done. Drain the fat, reserving 2 tablespoons. Transfer the sausage to a bowl. Return the skillet to the heat, add the reserved fat, mushrooms, and onion, and cook until the onion is soft.
In the prepared baking dish, layer half of the sweet potato mixture, half of the sausage, and all of the apple slices. Repeat (ending with the sausage). Bake uncovered for 35 minutes. Sprinkle the cheese on top and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
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This entry is from guest blogger Sarah Perreault, Associate Editor of The Old Farmer's Almanac. You can begin reading about the adventure of our regular Garden-Fresh blogger, Jane B., in this space in a few weeks after she's done stocking up her kitchen and planting her garden!
Sarah, our Senior Associate Editor, joined The Old Farmer's Almanac in 2003. If not outside with her husband and son enjoying a kayak trip down the Saco River or skiing in the White Mountains, you'll find her baking sweet treats in the kitchen.