Thursday, January 3, 2013

Beer-Glazed Sausage and Apples

I love New Year's.  I'm one of those people who always writes New Year's resolutions (and I've done so for a long time).  I also used to write a lot of poetry on New Year's Eve.  The problem with resolutions, as pretty much anyone who has ever tried it will tell you, is that it's really hard to keep up with them.  Even if your resolution is something you are excited about it can still be hard to keep it up.  And if I get off track I tend to just stay off track instead of figuring out how to get back on.  But last year I tried something different.  I actually read about it in a parenting magazine as a suggestion for kids, but I thought it would be great for adults, too.  Instead of making several resolutions I made a couple for each month of the year.  Some were just for that month but some were things that I maintained the rest of the year.  I really, really loved it.  I still didn't keep up with all of them, but for the important ones I really did.  I resolved to start praying for Jeremy every day a bit more intentionally, and I've been reading through this book and praying for him daily ever since.  One month my resolution was to go to bed by a certain time and get up at a certain time each day.  I did not keep up with going to bed on time (I've pretty much given up on that), but I did keep up with getting up.  I don't get up early every single day but it has become at least the norm for my lifestyle.  And it's GREAT.  Getting up early gives me some alone time before my son is up that I can use to spend with the Lord.  Also last year, I resolved to start a blog and I did (maybe I should have resolved to keep up with it).  This year I wrote down goals for how many blogs I expect myself to write each month.  I allowed for busy seasons (having a baby) and less-busy seasons (summer break).  I made check boxes for each month of the year.  And I LOVE lists.  More than I love lists, I love crossing things off lists.  So I really hope those check boxes motivate me to stay on track.

Speaking of busy seasons, it's been about two months since I blogged.  I am hanging my head in shame right now.  I actually cooked this meal in September.  Ha!  Over the past two months in this house we've had three holidays, two colds, and one yucky bout of RSV.  So yeah...things were a little hectic.  But life is a bit slower now, at least for the next 6 to 7 weeks until baby girl graces us with her presence.  So for now, I'm off to check a box.

Beer-Glazed Sausage and Apples
Very slightly adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Magazine, fall 2012
  • 1 12 oz. bottle Belgium-style wheat beer (I used some out-of-date Leinenhugel's)
  • 1/2-1 tsp. crushed red pepper, depending on your preferences
  • 1 14-16 oz. package smoked sausage (I used kielbasa) cut in 2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 lb. fresh green beans
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 2 medium cooking apples, cored and thinly sliced (I used granny smiths to counter-balance the sweetness of the glaze)
  • 2 tbsp. packed brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. finely shredded orange peel 
  • 1 carton baby white mushrooms (12 ounces) 

In a large saucepan bring 1/2 of the beer and the crushed red pepper to a boil. Next, add the sausage and green beans. Reduce the mixture to a simmer, cover, and cook 5-8 minutes until the beans are tender. Drain and set the meat and beans aside. In a large skillet melt 2 tbsp of the butter, and add the mushrooms.  When mushrooms are about two-thirds done, add the apples. Cook until the apples are just tender. Transfer mushrooms and apples to a platter. Add the sausage and green beans to the skillet you cooked the apples in. Cook the mixture, turning occasionally, until the sausage is browned on all sides. Once the sausage is browned, remove it and the beans from the skillet and drain any excess fat. Next, carefully add the remaining beer to skillet (mixture may foam) and stir to scrape up the browned bits. Add the remaining butter, brown sugar, vinegar, and orange peel to the skillet. Bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and boil the glaze gently, uncovered, for 5-6 minutes or until slightly thickened. Place the sausage and green beans back into the skillet to coat in the glaze. Then, fold in the apples and mushrooms. Cook over low heat until heated through.

This dish came out a little sweet for my liking.  If you like sweet, you will like this.  If you want to lessen the sweetness, you can just reduce the brown sugar.  Or, if you want to counteract the sweetness a bit I would suggest going for the entire teaspoon of red pepper, sticking with a tart apple, and using a spicier sausage.  Enjoy!


  1. Ok. so i have already had a major food craving all day. You just added to it. Thanks bunches. ;)

  2. Wow, it looks wonderful!!

  3. So happy to see you back! Life isn't about being perfect, but making continual steps closer to Jesus. I like your goal/resolution strategy. :) Keep walking.