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Easy Sausage Vegetable Bake – Fall Comfort Food


Rusted Van Photography

There’s a definite chill in the air these days, the leaves are starting to turn yellow, and at least here in the Great Northwest the rainy days have returned – that means it’s time again for our favorite fall comfort foods.  There’s nothing better than a warm, hearty dinner this time of year, and with such a bounty of vegetables available from the fall harvest, the time is perfect for a recipe like this one for a Sausage & Vegetable Bake.  This recipe was developed by our friends Kim H. and Cicely W. (of Rusted Van Photography) – not only is it full of fresh colorful vegetables and delicious sausage, it has the added bonus of being super easy!  We’ll turn it over to Kim and Cicely from here to share their recipe:


Easy Sausage Vegetable Bake

Adapted by Kayotic Kitchen: http://www.kayotic.nl/blog/lazy-sunday-casserole

We love this easy recipe! A delicious combination of vegetables and sausage links that bakes up to perfection in the oven. It is so easy to adapt to your family’s tastes and we can almost guarantee you will find yourself adding it to your regular dinner rotation during the fall!



Rusted Van Photography



  • 4-6 Isernio’s Hot Italian Sausage Links (Pork or Chicken)
  • 5 red potatoes
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • ½ pound carrots
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • salt (to taste)
  • freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp Italian herbs
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Rusted Van Photography



Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Wash and chop all of your vegetables into similar sized chunks (1 1/2 inch-ish chunks), evenly spreading into a large roasting pan. Cut onion in wedges in order to keep them in “chunks”.

Grate the garlic and add to a small bowl with the oil, italian herbs and chicken broth. Pour over all of the vegetables, gently tossing to ensure all vegetables are covered. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cover with foil and bake for approximately 45 minutes.

While your vegetables are baking, prepare your sausage, according to package directions and cutting each sausage into 2-3 pieces. No need to cook entirely through, just until browned on all sides as the sausages will finish off in the oven.

When your vegetables are fork tender, add sausages. Pour balsamic vinegar over entire mixture. Bake uncovered for an additional 25-30 minutes, flipping sausages and gently tossing vegetables halfway through this final bake time.


Note: Do yourself a favor and take the time to get regular carrots vs. pre-washed baby carrots – the difference in the flavor is WELL worth the extra effort


This recipe has endless combinations! If you don’t like something, leave it out or replace it with another root vegetable! Diced butternut squash, acorn squash, fennel, turnips, beets, brussel sprouts, and rutabaga all work wonderfully in this recipe! Even an apple would be a yummy and unexpected addition to this vegetable bake! The key is to keep them all similar in size to ensure even cooking.


(Thanks again to Cicely at Rusted Van Photography for the photos!)

Isernio’s Sausage – Available in Haggen NW Fresh Stores in WA, OR, CA, & AZ

Haggen Logo


Exciting News! Haggen NW Fresh stores in Washington, Oregon, California and Arizona are now carrying Isernio’s! Haggen has been providing the Northwest with fresh, local products since 1933 and Isernio’s is thrilled to be featured in Haggen stores. Look for a wide array of Isernio’s pork and chicken sausage links and rolls, as well as Isernio’s Premium extra lean ground chicken and ground chicken breast. We use only the finest natural seasonings and premium whole-muscle meat, so you pay for the protein, not the fat.  Pick up some sausage or ground chicken at Haggen and try one of our many recipes today!


Click here to locate a store nearest you and see what Isernio’s products are available in your neighborhood!

Shebron’s Stuffed Shells Recipe

Stuffed Shells

(Photo Credit: From Joanne http://www.inspiredtaste.net/8712)

Our friend Shebron has done it again! We LOVE her recipe for stuffed jumbo shells. This is a relatively simple recipe to make and it saves / freezes well for a later meal. If you are planning on serving this dish to guests, we recommend pairing it with an Italian Chianti which pairs well with tomato-based red sauces, and also compliments the creamy shell filling.


2 16oz. packages of Isernio’s Chicken Basil & Sun Dried Tomato Sausage (Also tastes great with our pork or chicken sausage rolls!)

1 12 oz. Box of Jumbo Shells

32 oz. of Ricotta Cheese

1-1.5 lb. Mushrooms, Chopped

½ – 1 package of fresh basil, chopped (your preference on how much)

1 Large Egg, beaten

3-5 cloves of garlic, minced

1 TBSP of Olive Oil

2-3 cups of shredded Mozzarella  Cheese 

1 cup of shredded parmesan cheese

Salt & Pepper to taste

2 cups Tomato Sauce. Have time to make it from scratch? Try our Half Hour Tomato Sauce!

Let’s Cook:

Remove the casings (or use bulk sausage) and in a large 13 quart pot, heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil and cook sausage over medium heat, breaking meat up with a wooden spoon, until the pinkness is gone, but not cooked through completely. Remove meat from skillet with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Bring 5 qts. of water to a boil. Add 2 Tbsp. salt to boiling water, add the pasta and cook about 8-10 minutes, or according to the package instructions. Drain the pasta.

Chop the mushrooms and sautee with olive oil & garlic in the same fry pan as you cooked the sausage in.  Set aside with the meat.

Chop fresh basil.

In a mixing bowl combine egg & ricotta cheese.  Add the meat, mushroom & garlic, fresh basil, salt & Pepper and mix together.

Fill each shell with the ricotta mixture.  Add tomato sauce to the baking dish, thinly coating the bottom. Place shells in baking dish.  Top with the remaining sauce. 

Add mozzarella and parmesan cheese to the top of your shells and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.


Autumn Sausage Minestrone

describe the image(Photo courtesy of Rusted Van Photography)

The most colorful season of the year is upon us. As spectacular trees display vibrant amber, red, and yellow colors, the days shorten and  the air becomes a little more crisp, Autumn invites us to enjoy again those hearty “fill you up” dishes. This recipe, provided by our friends Kim Harer and Cicely Williams, is adapted from Ina Garten (http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/winter-minestrone-and-garlic-bruschetta-recipe.html) and boasts an abundance of colors and deep flavors you have to taste to believe. It’s light but filling and freezes / reheats well for another meal.


1-2      Tbsp. Olive Oil

1         16oz Isernio’s Mild Italian Sausage Roll (The recipe in the photo above uses Isernio’s Mild Italian PORK sausage roll, but you can also use Isernio’s Italian Chicken roll or 4 links)

1 1/2   Cups yellow onion, chopped

3         Stalks Celery, halved lengthwise and chopped

3         Large Carrots, peeled, quartered lengthwise and chopped

4         Cloves Garlic, finely chopped or pressed

2 1/2   Cups butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1/2 inch pieces

2         Tsp. fresh thyme leaves, chopped

1         26-oz can Italian style plum tomatoes, with juice, squeezed by hand or broken up in pot with a wooden spoon

6-8     Cups low salt Chicken Broth

1        Bay Leaf

3        Tsp. Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper to taste

1        15-oz. can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

1/2      lb. Dried Ditalini or Tubetti or other small tubular pasta

8-10    Ounces fresh baby spinach leaves

1/2     Cup good dry white wine

2        Tbsp. pesto

4-6     Tbsp. grated Pecorino Romano cheese


Let’s Cook!

Bring 5 quarts of water to boil. Add 2 Tbsp. salt to boiling water, add the pasta and cook about 8-10 minutes, or according to the package instructions. Drain the pasta. Note: If you will be freezing this recipe, you may want to skip this step and add cooked pasta when re-heating. Otherwise, the pasta may become over-cooked and mushy!

In a large 13 quart pot, heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil and cook sausage over medium heat, breaking meat up with a wooden spoon and cooking until all pinkness is gone. Add the onions, carrots, celery, squash, garlic, and thyme and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, until the vegetables begin to soften.

Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, bay leaf, salt, and pepper to the pot. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.

Discard the bay leaf. Add the beans and cooked pasta and heat through. The soup should be quite thick but if it’s too thick, add more chicken broth. Just before serving add the spinach,and toss with 2 big spoons (like tossing a salad). Cook just until the leaves are wilted. Stir in the white wine and pesto. Depending on the saltiness of the chicken stock, add another teaspoon or two of salt to taste. Serve with Pecorino Romano cheese and your choice of Italian bread.

Isernio’s Pork Sausage Rolls – Available in QFC stores in WA

Isernio’s Sausage Now Offering Fresh Pork Sausage Rolls throughout the Pacific Northwest

Guess these new additions resized 600

We are excited to announce Isernio’s all-natural pork sausage rolls available for the first time in the Northwest!  Look for the Italian, Breakfast and Spicy Breakfast pork sausage rolls in the fresh meat department of QFC stores now.   Created from Frank Isernio’s recipes using premium authentic Italian seasonings, these sausage rolls can be used in place of ground beef in any of your favorite dishes.  And since they’re made from 80% lean, whole muscle pork; these all-natural sausage rolls are a great way to eat healthier without sacrificing flavor. The same flavors you enjoy in our links are now available in roll packaging.

Look for these Pork Sausage Rolls
available NOW AT QFC!

Try these pork sausage rolls in some of our favorite classic Italian recipes like Orecchietti with Rapini and Hot Italian Sausage and Pasta e Fagioli (“Pasta Fazool”), or in a hearty breakfast dish like Breakfast Frittata.   We are confident you’ll find our authentic Italian flavor and healthy pork sausage a delicious part of your meals.

Isernio’s Hot Italian Chicken & Tomato Basil Spaghetti Squash

This recipe, created by our good friend, Shebron Webley, combines all the elements of a hearty pasta dish in a healthier, better for you entree. Spaghetti squash is a great alternative to noodles and it’s packed full of important nutrients such as fiber, beta carotene, potassium and vitamin A. Ingredients: 1 Spaghetti Squash (3+ lb.) 3 Tablespoons of Butter 1 Can of Diced Tomatoes (14 0z) ½ lb. of Mushrooms, cut into quarters 1 Package of Basil, chopped 2-3 Large Shallots, choppd 1-2 Tablespoons Garlic, minced 1/3 Cup of White Wine 3/4 Cup of Shredded Parmesan Cheese 2 lb. Isernio’s Italian Sausages Let’s Cook! 1)    Cut spaghetti squash in half length wise and clean out the seeds.   Coat the flesh with olive oil, salt & pepper.  Place on baking sheet face down and roast in the oven for 35 minutes.  Once cooled, use a fork and scrape out the flesh of the squash from side to side. (Note: This will give it the noodle type texture and shape.  It will not work if you go top to bottom.) 2)    Choose a pot or pan that will contain the sausages and fill with enough water to cover the sausages, but don’t place sausages in yet. Bring the water to a boil, and then turn off heat completely. Immediately place the sausages in the hot water with tongs. Cover the pan, with the heat still off, and leave the sausages in the hot water for 7 minutes. Drain the water and wipe out the skillet. In the same skillet, pan brown the sausages over medium heat with a teaspoon of olive oil (if you prefer to use the grill, grill over medium heat). Once the chicken sausages are browned and have reached an internal temperature of 165°F, slice them at an angle. 3)    In a sauté pan melt your 3 tablespoons of butter.  Add your chopped shallots, minced garlic and mushrooms and sauté for a few minutes.  Add the can of diced tomatoes with the liquid, basil and white wine.  Let the ingredients simmer, reducing the liquid a bit. Add the spaghetti squash and mix all ingredients together well.  Final step is to add the sliced sausage and parmesan cheese mix it all together. From Shebron, “I like to use the Hot Italian Chicken sausages for an extra pop of flavor.   You can garnish your dish with a bit more fresh basil and shredded parmesan cheese.   I serve this with a large mixed green salad and it is a hit every time! My family could not get enough!!” Special thanks to Shebron and her family for their commitment and for sharing their recipe!

Spoil Mom… the Isernio’s Way

mother%27s day

Make mom think you hired a personal chef with this savory, elegant meal. Whether you are a Gordon Ramsay in the kitchen or a novice, mussels are a tasty, healthy and easy to prepare seafood and will put the “Wow Factor” in this special meal. “Easy to buy, store and cook,… mussels are simple yet sophisticated, making them the perfect choice to treat mom,” says Linda Duncan, Executive Director of the Mussel Industry Counsel (http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/mussels-for-mom—flex-your-muscles-in-the-kitchen-this-mothers-day-92879119.html)

This recipe for sausage and mussels is a favorite around here because it serves a lot of people (approximately 6-8) and it isn’t too difficult to create.


1 lb Isernio’s Hot Italian Sausage (tastes great with Isernio’s (hot) Italian Chicken Sausage too!)

2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4 Garlic Cloves, Finely Chopped

1 Medium Fennel Bulb, Finely Chopped

1 Cup Dry White Wine

1 Rosemary Sprig

½ Teaspon Salt

¼ Teaspoon Fine Ground Black Pepper

1 Pinch Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

3lb Small Mussels, Cleaned (Learn how to debeard, clean and store mussels here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2Od7_XYye0)

1 Teaspoon Lemon Zest

½ Cup Finely Chopped Parsley

Let’s Cook!

Over medium heat, heat the olive oil in a large pot. Once the oil is hot, add in the garlic, lemon zest, fennel, salt, crushed red pepper flakes and pepper. After about 3 minutes, crumble in the sausage and thoroughly cook over medium-high heat for about 4-5 minutes.

Add the rosemary and pour the wine into the sausage mixture.

Bring to a boil then lower the heat to medium.

Add in the mussels, steaming them with the pan covered for about 4-5 minutes, until the mussels open.

You can put the mussels into one large serving dish and garnish with parsley or divide the mussels among 6+ bowls with the sausage and broth.

Have fun pairing this dish with mom’s favorite salad, bread and wine! We like to serve this dish with grilled Italian bread, a simple arugula salad and a light, crisp Pinot Grigio.

Easter Brunch: Isernio’s Breakfast Lasagna

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We are hearing from several of our wonderful fans that our breakfast lasagna recipe is a favorite for serving guests and for special occasions, so in preparation for Easter we want to share with you this dish. This quickly assembled recipe can be put together the night before serving if desired, leaving you free to simply bake it the next morning.

Shopping List:

3 tbsps. olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 yellow bell pepper, chopped

1 cup mushrooms, sliced thin

1 lb. of thinly sliced potatoes (or hash browns)

1 lb. Isernio’s pork or chicken Italian sausage, precooked (try the Hot Italian variety for added spice!)

5 eggs

1 cup whole milk

2 cups Provolone, shredded

Enough olive oil to coat bottom and sides of pan

Salt & pepper to taste

Let’s Cook!

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Place olive oil in a sauté pan and set over medium high heat. Add the vegetables and cook for 4 – 5 minutes, or just until tender-crisp. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Grease a 9″ x 11″ lasagna pan. Layer the hash browns in the pan, spreading them out evenly. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.

Evenly spread the sautéed vegetable mixture over the hash browns.

Evenly spread the sausage over the vegetables.

Beat the eggs, milk, salt and pepper and pour the egg mixture over the sausage.

Spread the grated cheese on top (Note: the cheese can also be layered into the lasagna at various intervals, as well as being placed on top). Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes, or until eggs are set to desired doneness.

Pizza Napoletana with Vince

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Our friend Vince Bianchini came to our offices today to try out a new recipe in our test kitchen
– Neapolitan pizza – and he brought his pizza maker all the way from Portland, OR. Vince has visited Italy 10+ times and once lived with his Nonna over the summer while in high school. During his many visits to Naples he became intrigued by watching the locals make Neapolitan pizza and it is something he has learned to master. Today he is sharing with us his recipe, a delicious pizza prepared with the freshest ingredients, and in 20 minutes or less. Win!


1 Isernio’s Italian Chicken Sausage Roll

OR 1 Isernio’s Hot Italian Chicken Sausage Roll

½ cup Tomato sauce (Vince premade the sauce using his home grown tomatoes – try our tomato sauce recipe here: https://www.isernio.com/recipes/halfhourtomatosauce.aspx)

2 Mozzarella Fesca balls (about 2” in diameter)

¼ cup Shredded mozzarella cheese (low moisture, part skim)

1 sprig Basil

2 tbsp. Olive oil

3-4 cups Pizza Dough (Vince brought premade dough. try this recipe for dough http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/homemade_pizza/ or pick up a fresh made dough ball at your local bakery or retailer)

2 tbsp. Cornmeal (to sprinkle over the cutting board / paddle so that the dough rolls and doesn’t stick) 

Let’s Cook!

1. Flatten the ball of dough with your hands on a work surface that is lightly covered with cornmeal. We used a plastic cutting board. From the center of the flattened ball of dough, press the dough outwards until it is approximately ½ inch thick. Rotate and spread though dough as much as you can without breaking it apart. Let the dough sit for 3-5 minutes.

2. Heat a nonstick 12″ skillet over medium heat. Slice roll open, and place in skillet, break up and crumble sausage with a flat wooden spoon. Cook sausage until it just loses its pinkness. Don’t overcook or brown sausage! Set aside.

3. Continue to spread the dough until you have the thickness and shape you desire.

4. Pour the olive oil across the surface of the dough, in a line or speckled manner

5. Pour the tomato sauce a spoonful at a time across the surface of the dough (no need to worry about mixing or “evening out” the oil and tomato sauce – it will happen in the oven)

6. Add slices of mozzarella fresca, shredded mozzarella, sliced basil leaves and top with sausage

7. If you have a pizza maker, follow the instructions included for proper cook time (Here is a link to a pizza oven similar to what was used in the test kitchen this afternoon: http://www.brevilleusa.com/crispy-crust-pizza-maker.html. Through an online search we found that similar pizza makers range between $60.00 and $300.00, so you can find something that suits your needs). If you are not using a pizza maker, place your pizza on a pizza stone or baking surface and bake at 450°F / 232°C for 15-18 minutes or until crust is golden brown.