It has come to my attention that there’s a young lady named Jenny in Northville, Michigan, who’s trying to learn how to cook a few things for her family. Or, as Jenny herself put it:
soo i’ve been reading your blog and it inspired me to try and cook dinner for my family. (basically buy all the ingredients and then ask for help because i have no idea what i’m doing) but we made the classic diner roast beef meal and it turned out awesome! haha so thanks for the recipe!
As I told Jenny, I do have a problem in that I tend to get really technical about things. I’ve done computer and programming documentation for a while now, and a lot of times the wordiness seeps into recipes and whatnot. Even when I try to write something simple so it’s easier to follow, my tendency is to make a recipe so it’s extremely repeatable by including as many friggin’ instructions as possible.
This sometimes backfires in a bad way.
So for Jenny here are a couple recipes that are really good. I know they’re good because we tried them. See, that’s where the pics come from, ya’ know? Anyway, first thing you do is get that pink blanket off yer head. I told you before Jenny, you look like Hindu Barbie when you wear that thing like that …
Head to the store and get about 3 pounds of Kowalski Fresh Polish Style Sausage, or six lengths. It’ll be in the meat case with the pork. It’s been brewed and bottled in Hamtramck, Michigan, for more than 85 years, which means it’s really good.
Oh, get some unsalted butter too. I know there’s none in your mom’s fridge and it’s better for this than that stuff that she keeps in there.
Use a really sharp knife and cut the sausage into 1/2″ slices. Wash the knife, and then also slice an onion about 1/4″ thick, then cut each slice of onion into 6 sections. Rinse the dirt off about 5 potatoes and slice them about 1/4″ thick (watch your fingers!), then rinse the slices under cold water and drain them.
Get two big skillets out. Set one over medium-high heat, the other over medium heat. (Two different sized skillets? Make the big one the medium-high heat one.) Get 5 tablespoons of that butter and melt it in the medium-high heat pan. As soon as the butter is melted, or right when it starts smoking, gently lay the potato slices in the melted butter. Sprinkle on a little salt and maybe some pepper if you feel like it. From then on, until they’re done, flip those potatoes with a spatula about every 5 minutes.
After starting the potatoes, add a little bit of vegetable or olive oil in the other pan and add the sausage and onion. Stir this as often as the potatoes, about every 5 minutes.
You’ll want both the potato slices and the sausage pieces to end up a golden brown, just like the top picture. To get them to finish at the same time, you may have to turn the sausage burner down if the sausage is getting done faster than the potatoes. This is a good exercise in both paying attention to when you’re cooking and in getting a feel for how to time different dishes so they’re done at the same time.
When they’re done, drain the potatoes in a colander (it’s the strainer thingy with the big holes) and drain the sausage on a plate that has some paper towel on it. To serve, just spoon it all onto plates.
Easy, eh Jen? Really it is. However, this other recipe is even easier …
More Kowalski Polish Style Sausage. (Why? Because it’s good and good for you.) Oh, and get some buns. Hot dog buns. Not those Aunt Millie things though, they’re too soft and split at the seams … The ones I use are Wonder or GFS Marketplace restaurant-grade buns.
If you look in the back if this pic you’ll see some Snyder’s white corn tortilla chips and a weird-looking pink dip. The dip is a jar of Pepper and Onion Relish from the Harry & David store up in Birch Run, Michigan, mixed with a softened 8 oz. of cream cheese. Mary just mixed them up with a hand mixer like they told her at the Harry & David store. The stuff is addicting! I ate like a third of the batch this afternoon. Dang, that’s some good stuff …
Anyway … where was I … oh, right …
Cut the sausages in half so they’re about the same length as the buns. Skillet on the stove, medium heat, let it heat up … Add a little olive or vegetable oil to the pan. No, not the spray stuff. Get some oil. Geez … Once the oil has heated through a minute or so, use a pair of metal tongs to gently lay the sausages in there.
From then on, until they’re done, flip the sausages over every few minutes. They’ll turn a nice golden brown like you won’t believe. Cook them about 25 minutes, flipping them every 5 minutes. They’ll start looking really good.
When the sausages are done, heat each bun for about 15 seconds in the microwave before placing the sausage in it. I like mine with yellow mustard, but Mary likes ketchup on hers. Still, they’re better with mustard, really they are …
When you’re done with these, you should also try making my ground bologna sandwich spread. It’s better than most, mostly because it uses Koegel ring bologna (which you should be able to find at Kroger now) and real Hellman’s mayonaisse. I know your dad will eat it. I’m not sure about your mom though. I mean, you know how floofy she can be.
Take care, kiddo … and no more pink blankets on yer head!