Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Creamy Sausage Dip

Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Hey, friends. Thanks so much to those of you who left me sweet words of encouragement after my last post. I’m feeling empowered to make changes, not only to on my site, but in my life in general. I started by buying some brightly colored, elastic waist, wide leg pants to wear on the plane. They’re so comfy, but it’s hard to believe I’m actually allowed to wear these out in public. They’re basically fancy pajamas. I would normally never wear such a wide line for fear of looking fat, but I’m leaning in to cozy comfort and self-care this year, and so far, it’s working out well. Thanks to Kendi for the inspiration

And yet, despite all this willingness to try new things, I’m bringing you another “classic” recipe today. Read: an old recipe from waaaay back when I first started the blog and had no idea what I was doing. Real talk, I don’t have time to test enough new recipes during the week to bring you something brand new every week. Some of the stuff I try is a dud, and I’m not sharing anything with you unless it’s totally awesome. But reshooting old recipes helps me see how much I’ve grown. And even if I’m not as good as the professionals, I’m much better at food photography than I used to be, and that’s something worth being proud of I guess.

Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Now that I’ve figured out how to make English sausage taste like something, I’m feeling much more confident about bringing some of my old recipes back into rotation. Today it’s Creamy Sausage Dip. We eat chips and dip for dinner on the reg, but even if you’re not a heathen and eat actual food for dinner, this is a great hot dip for a game day party, movie night, or other gathering where people are pretending they’re not hungry but actually want to pig out on something savoury and delicious.

I think you might be able to stir just about anything into some warm cream cheese and come out with something heavenly, but spicy bits of sausage and some tomato and chillies definitely work. This dip comes together quickly all in one skillet. You could even make it in a cast-iron and serve it right in that. Damn, I should have done that for my photos.

Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

We’re embracing the new and reimagining some classics and generally loving life. Put some creamy sausage dip on your table, and don’t forget to be awesome.

Creamy Sausage Dip
Serves 4
Creamy Sausage Dip is a little bit spicy and a lot bit awesome.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 8 oz Cumberland sausage, casings removed
  2. 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  3. 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  4. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  5. 1 clove garlic, minced
  6. 4 ounces chopped tomatoes with chillies
  7. 8 ounces cream cheese
  8. Sturdy chips for dipping
Instructions
  1. In a skillet over medium heat, add your sausage and break it up into small pieces with your wooden spoon. Sprinkle in the cumin, red pepper flakes and black pepper, and stir to mix. Stir occasionally until the sausage is cooked through.
  2. Add the garlic and tomatoes with chillies. Stir to combine.
  3. Finally, add in your cream cheese, and stir until the cream cheese is melted and just starts to bubble.
  4. Transfer your dip to a bowl, or not as you please. Serve warm with your favorite tortilla chips.
Notes
  1. If you're making this recipe in the US, you can just use Jimmy Dean or another bulk breakfast sausage that you love. You may or may not want to omit the cumin and red and black pepper. American sausage is already well seasoned.
Adapted from How to be Awesome on $20 a Day
http://awesomeon20.com/
Cheesy Sausage Squares | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Cheesy Sausage Squares

Cheesy Sausage Squares | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

After two and a half years living in the UK, not only do I have to fork over all my money to renew my visa, but I have also finally started to figure out how to make British ingredients mock some of my American favorites. 

This recipe involves two American products that I love and was so sad to have to live without. The first is Jimmy Dean sausage, and the second is Pillsbury Crescent Rolls. Put those two things together, and you are basically guaranteed to be eating something awesome. Their absence left a sad hole in my life. 

Cheesy Sausage Squares | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I’ve managed to partially fill those holes. Jus-Roll croissants are not 100% exactly the same as crescent rolls, but they’re pretty damn awesome. I have been known to eat all six of them by myself in one day. They also perform really well in recipes like this, better than just regular puff pastry.

Jimmy Dean sausage is a bit trickier to pin down, but I’ve found that if you add cumin and and crushed red pepper flakes to Cumberland sausage, it’s tasty enough to be getting on with. 

I’ve been testing lots of recipes lately, and nothing had really been exciting me until I made these Cheesy Sausage Squares. I mean, it’s hard to say no to something this loaded with cheese. We send that spicy sausage swimming in some cream cheese, lay some shredded cheddar on top of that, and wrap the whole thing in pastry by way of buttery, flaky croissants in a can. We like to keep it classy around here.

Cheesy Sausage Squares | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

It takes some time to figure life out, but occasionally you solve some problems and then get to eat delicious things. These Cheesy Sausage Squares were an excellent discovery.

Cheesy Sausage Squares
Serves 6
Cheesy Crescent Squares are an absolutely creamy delicious start to your morning.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 can croissants or crescent squares
  2. 1 pound sausage, casings removed
  3. 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  4. 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  5. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  6. 8 ounces cream cheese
  7. 8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 375F and lightly grease a rectangular casserole or baking dish.
  2. Unroll your croissants and cover the bottom of your pan with the dough. Trim off the excess of the roll and save it for the top.
  3. Cook your sausage over medium heat in a large skillet, breaking it up with your wooden spoon as it cooks. While it's cooking, add the cumin, crushed red pepper flakes, and black pepper, and stir it through evenly.
  4. Once your sausage is cooked through, add the cream cheese to the skillet, and stir as it melts to combine it with the sausage.
  5. Add your sausage cream cheese mixture to your casserole dish and spread evenly. Sprinkle the shredded cheddar evenly over the sausage, then cover the whole thing with another layer of your croissant dough. If you have any excess, trim it off.
  6. Bake the whole thing for 20-25 minutes or until the pastry is browned.
  7. Allow this to cool for at least 15 minutes before cutting into squares.
Adapted from Pilsbury
Adapted from Pilsbury
http://awesomeon20.com/
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Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy

Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I went back to work this week, and thankfully it was only for two days because any longer might have killed me. Two and a bit weeks of being totally chill was absolute bliss, so any level of responsibility after that is a bit of a shock to the system. It reminded me how grateful I am to work indoors in a clean, heated office, even if not everyone I work with smells extremely awesome. That’s what they make air freshener for, right?

Eating at work is definitely not as fun, though I do consume a lot fewer calories when I’m at the office. To be honest, I’ve spent the past few days randomly stuffing popcorn and peanut M&Ms in my face that were left over from last time we went to the movies. Maybe I should make 2018 the year I eat well at work. Does anybody know how to do that? Send tips.

Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

We’re still doing it up right at the weekends, though. I made you some Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy. Don’t panic, British friends. Please trust me when I tell you that this recipe is completely awesome. 

The biscuits are so tender and flavorful with the perfect thin crispy crust on the outside. They’re flecked with green onion and fresh parsley for added flavor, and they smell completely perfect coming out of the oven. I don’t even bother to use a biscuit cutter. I just pat out the dough and divide it into four with a pizza cutter. 

The gravy is not strictly traditional, but pork is so lean these days, making a roux ensures that you have plenty of gravy to go around. We actually had a little leftover that still tastes awesome on some buttered toast. My favorite sausage for gravy in the US has got to be Jimmy Dean Hot, but in the UK the sausage is, shall we say, a bit more subtly flavored. Cumberland sausage is the way to go, and just make sure you check your gravy for seasoning. You may need to add a bit more salt, pepper, and cayenne. 

Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I’m falling more and more in love with food as time goes on. Let’s spend all our time in the kitchen and make everything. Starting with Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Gravy. It’s gonna be so awesome.

Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy
Serves 4
Herbed Biscuits & Creamy Sausage Gravy is an awesome version of an American classic that deserves some love on all sides of the pond.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
For the biscuits
  1. 1 cup all-purpose flour
  2. 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  3. 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  4. 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  5. 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
  6. 1/2 cup buttermilk
  7. 1 green onion, green top only
  8. 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
For the gravy
  1. 1 green onion, white part leftover from the biscuits
  2. 1 pound pork sausage
  3. 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  4. 4 tablespoons flour
  5. 1 cup single cream
  6. 1 cup milk
  7. Cayenne, salt, and pepper to taste
For the biscuits
  1. Preheat your oven to 450F.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Cut in your butter in your favorite way. I find it easiest just to use my fingers to squish the butter and flour together until I have a coarse mixture.
  3. Add in the buttermilk and use your scissors to cut in the green onion and parsley. Mix it all until it just starts to come together. Overmixing will make your biscuits tougher. I had to add another small drizzle of buttermilk to make it work.
  4. Turn your biscuits dough out onto a lightly floured surface and fold it together just a few times until it comes together and then pat it out until it's about an inch thick. Use your pizza roller to cut your dough into four sections then transfer your biscuits to a parchment lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until very lightly golden. Set your biscuits aside until they're ready for gravy action.
For the gravy
  1. Scissor the white part of your green onion into a large skillet and add your sausage. If you have links, remove the casing, obviously. Cook these together over medium high heat, crumbling the sausage as it cooks. Once your sausage is cooked through, remove the sausage and onion to a plate or bowl using tongs or a slotted spoon.
  2. Add your butter to your skillet and melt it. Once it stops foaming, sprinkle in the flour and whisk it together with the butter. Depending on how much grease your sausage left behind, you may need to another sprinkle of flour. You want the mixture to be pasty. Cook this mixture until it starts to smell nutty.
  3. Slowly whisk in your cream and milk in small installments whisking out any lumps before you add more. Eventually you'll have a creamy, dreamy mixture.
  4. Add your seasonings and fold your sausage and onions back into your gravy. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
  5. Split open your biscuits, scoop on a bunch of gravy, and go to town.
Adapted from Bev Cooks
Adapted from Bev Cooks
http://awesomeon20.com/
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