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Chicken N' Sausage

I have been in SUCH a food rut these days.  There is comfort in knowing that I have all the ingredients to make all the things we normally have for dinner, but the only problem is that I find myself making the same 5 things over and over again.  Booring!

Now I know that idle hands are the devils plaything, I wondered what happens with idle tongues?  I had to come up with something a little different but I had to make it out of the already-purchased food items that were in my house.  I wasn’t making a store run just so that I could dare to be different.  So I hit the freezer, then the pantry.  I always have chicken thighs, there was some spicy sausage I could use and I remembered a jar of tomato sauce that was nearing its expiration date.  Perfect.

I was so relieved to have my de-frosting tray.  You know those black griddles that have a grill pan on one side and a flat griddle on the other?  Well, they are GREAT at defrosting things quickly.  And no, I didn’t know that when I bought it.  They are reasonably priced and easy to locate, you can find them at any home shop like Bed Bath and Beyond, Linens & Things, etc…..  They are wonderful for Sunday breakfast too, you can make many pancakes or pieces of French toast at one time.  But for this – it was my super duper fast defrosting tray.

Once the chicken was thawed, I seasoned it with my standard favorites; a little Sticks & Buds, a little Rub All Over and a pinch of Kosher Salt.  The sausage was pre-cooked so I just thawed it and slashed about three lines diagonally across.  You don’t want to cut the sausage through, you just want to allow for a lot of browned edges and a way for the tomato sauce to get in.  As far as the sauce, I used Victoria’s Marinara – it’s my favorite sauce.  But I bet that any jarred sauce would be good as long as you like it – choose your favorite.

Once all the meat is thawed, preheat your oven to 420° and pull out a large fry pan.  Get it very hot and use a drop of Magic Oil if you have it, otherwise sub with olive, soybean or veggie.  I seared the chicken on the skin side until it was golden brown, and then placed it into a large baking dish, skin side up.  If I were using uncooked sausage, I would have slashed it and cooked it in a 475° oven for 20 minutes before adding it to the chicken.

Line the baking dish with the chicken and the sausage and pour in the entire jar of tomato sauce.  I like to pour it around the chicken to leave the skin uncovered, that way it will get nice and crispy.  Just the way I like it.

Cover with tin foil and cook for 30 minutes at 420°.  Remove the tin foil and cook for another 10.  The chicken will be butter-soft and the sausage will give the chicken and the sauce a smoky, slightly spicy flavor that will make you want to lick your lips.  At least that’s what Michael does when he comes home and sees it on the table. 

Now, if I wanted to be even lazier than I already am, I could put raw broccoli into the baking pan with the meat as well.  (Counts for my veggie.)  Then all I need is a salad and I’m done with making dinner.  And believe me, there is no better moment then when you realized that you are finished.  All you have left to do it eat.  For some reason, broccoli and sausage go great together when you swim them in tomato sauce.

This dish stores great in the fridge, it will hold up to 4 days.  It is also not a bad dish to make in advance and freeze. 

I have been so pleased with all the requests for our FREE samples of Sticks & Buds, now I’m going to do the same with Rub All Over.  If you would like a free sample, email me at  Cook@Iveysinmykitchen.com with your name and address.  Only one per household please.

If you have any questions or requests, you can always email or send by post at :  Ivey’s In My Kitchen, Inc.  PO Box 181, Crompond, NY  10517.

From all of us at Ivey’s In My Kitchen, we wish you the happiest and warmest of New Years.  Be sweet and enjoy!

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