Cottage Pie

Cottage Pie with Brisket
Cottage Pie with Brisket

     A few weeks back, a guy named Doc Eggerton on the Egghead Forum made a cottage pie. Seeing his pictures started a craving that I just couldn’t put off any longer. Even though I love cottage pie, it’s not something I’ve tackled much. I think I’ve tried cooking it one or two times. Years ago. I seem to recall trying to use jarred gravy. Yeah…that doesn’t fly around our house anymore. So it was off to the good ole interweb to scour for recipes.

     And while searching for recipes, why not dig up a bit of history? I know lots of people will tell you that shepherds pie contains lamb and cottage pie contains beef. Makes sense, shepherds tend lamb, it’s readily on hand, why would they use beef? Contrary to popular belief, that is not quite correct. Seems like the term cottage pie was coined in 1791 and the dish was a means of using leftover meat of any kind. The term shepherds pie didn’t come around until 1870 and since then it has been used interchangeably with cottage pie. It has only a recent trend to specify shepherds pie with lamb and cottage pie with beef. And while we’re on the topic of recent trends, the use of previously uncooked meat is a new addition as well. So call this cottage pie. Or call it shepherds pie. I don’t mind which one you decide to go with.

Half a pound of leftover brisket, cubed.
Half a pound of leftover brisket, cubed.

     Since the main focus of this blog is barbecue and grilling, and it just so happened that I had some leftover brisket that I smoked overnight Friday, why not incorporate that into our cottage pie? I wasn’t 100% convinced that this would be a good idea due to the smokiness of the brisket and how it would turn out texture wise. Most of the recipes I was seeing called for 1.5 lbs of ground beef. Something in my brain kept saying “Use half a pound of brisket. You know you want to. Just do it.” Who am I to argue with myself? And wouldn’t that look silly anyway? I know it would probably confuse the dogs who are always staring at me while I cook, hoping that a choice morsel will get dropped.

     And what about vegetables? What vegetables should or should not be included in cottage pie? I wasn’t really able to dig up/finally gave up looking for information on that. Considering it was probably invented by frugal peasant housewives looking to serve leftover meat, it only makes sense that they probably used whatever vegetables they had on hand. Whatever was in season. We just happened to have carrots, peas, corn and mushrooms, so that is what we used.

The filling simmering away.
The filling simmering away.

Ingredients

For the potatoes:

  • 2 lbs  russet potatoes (about 4 medium)
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 4 T unsalted butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the meat filling:

  • 2 T canola oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lb 93% lean ground beef
  • 1 lb of leftover brisket, cubed
  • 4 oz cremini mushrooms (Baby Bellas) chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1 Tbsp concentrated tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp Marsala
  • 1 1/4 cup beef broth
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 3 green onions chopped + more for garnish if desired
  • salt and pepper to taste
Who doesn't love creamy mashed potatoes?
Who doesn’t love creamy mashed potatoes? You can make the mashed potatoes ahead of time or prepare the filling while the potatoes are boiling.

Directions

For the potatoes:

  1. Peel the potatoes and dice. Place in a saucepan and cover with cold water, bring to a boil. Cook until tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Drain and return to burner for approximately one minute to cook off any excess moisture.
  2. Remove from heat and mash the potatoes with a potato masher. Stir in the butter.
  3. Mix the milk, heavy cream and egg yolk together and add to the potatoes. Add the scallions and salt and pepper to taste. Cover the saucepan until you are ready to top the dish.
The meat filling spread evenly in a casserole dish. Now would be a good time to taste and adjust any seasonings.
The meat filling spread evenly in a casserole dish. Now would be a good time to taste and adjust any seasonings.

For the meat filling:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F
  2. Pour the canola oil in a 12 inch skillet and heat over medium high. When hot, add the onions and carrots and cook approximately 3 to 4 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook an additional minute.
  3. Add the ground beef and cook until browned through. Next, add the brisket, mushrooms and rosemary and thyme. Cook an additional minute or two.
  4. Sprinkle the flour onto the meat mixture, stir and cook for about a minute. Add the tomato paste, Marsala, Worcestire sauce and beef broth and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly.
  5. Add the corn, peas and green onions and cook for an additional minute or two. Spread evenly into a casserole dish.
  6. Spoon the potatoes on top of the meat filling and spread evenly with a spatula. Try to create a seal around the edges to prevent the mixture from bubbling out while cooking.
  7. Place on a cookie sheet (to prevent any messes if it bubbles over) and into the middle rack of the oven for 25 minutes or just until the potatoes begin to brown.
  8. Remove and allow to cool 10-15 minutes before serving. Garnish with extra green onions if desired.
Scoop the mashed potatoes on top of the meat filling
Scoop the mashed potatoes on top of the meat filling

I found using a large spoon to scoop the potatoes onto the filling worked best. Try to spread them around evenly.

Spreading the potatoes out
Spreading the potatoes out

A rubber spatula worked wonders in getting the scoops of potatoes spread out evenly.

Ready for the oven
Ready for the oven

Do your best to seal the edges up with the potatoes to prevent the mixture from bubbling out while it cooks. You could probably spend a lot of time doing this. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect.

Resting after 25 minutes in a 400F oven
Resting after 25 minutes in a 400F oven

I had a feeling I was going to have some leakage on that back edge. Oh well. It’s not like its going to kill anybody. Fight back that urge and allow it to rest for at least 10 minutes.

Ready to eat. Can you see those cubes of brisket hiding in there?
Ready to eat. Can you see those cubes of brisket hiding in there?

     This dish takes quite a bit longer to prepare than a lot of our other dishes, especially if you consider smoking the brisket as part of the process, which I don’t (BTW, if you don’t have leftover brisket on hand, just use 1.5 lbs of lean ground beef). It’s not so much that any of it is hard, there is just a lot of prep work and a lot of steps, but it is so worth it in the end. I think I started around 5pm and we were sitting down to eat around 6:50-7ish. Granted, I took my time and that is from start to finish including emptying the dishwasher, getting the ingredients out, cleaning dishes along the way, total cook time in the oven and allowing it to rest afterwards. Still, it was very rewarding.

     My original fears about the smokiness of the brisket and the texture were proved wrong. The brisket did add a note of smokiness to the dish, but it was subtle. And as for the texture, the brisket was soft and melt in your mouth tender. The gravy beats any store bought jar stuff hands down. Rich, complex and beefy. And creamy mashed potatoes? How could you not like a dish like this? Perfect for anybody in your life who is a meat and taters kind of guy. Not to mention it slips some vegetables in their diet as well.

     I almost cooked this on the Egg, or at least the final baking. Almost. I’m sure it would have been fine, but I didn’t want the mashed potatoes to absorb any smoke flavor and thereby add more to the whole dish. Not to mention I just didn’t want to add that extra step of lighting the Egg and getting it stabilized. If I had, I would have set up the Egg for an indirect cook, with the plate setter legs down and then placed the casserole dish on spacers to allow air to flow underneath it. Cook temp at 400F. For other grills, light the coals or burners under half the grill, preheat to 400F and set the casserole over the unlit side. You may need to turn it 180 degrees halfway through. Cooking time should be roughly the same. Honestly, I don’t think this dish would really benefit from being cooked outdoors on a grill.

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Chili and Polenta Casserole

Chili casserole
Chili casserole

     I’m sure that like many of you, when the weather starts getting colder, chili starts popping up on the menu. Now don’t get me wrong, I LOVE chili,  but have you ever made TOO much chili? I don’t mind eating chili a few days in a row. Sometimes, we turn it into Frito pie or chili dogs or even make cheese enchiladas out of it. But the other week we were looking for something different. Something a bit out of the norm for us and this is what we came up with.

I'm sure if you had the time and energy, you coul dmake your own polenta, but this works well enough.
I’m sure if you had the time and energy, you coul dmake your own polenta, but this works well enough.

Ingredients

  • 3 to 4 cups of leftover chili
  • 4 ears of corn, kernels cut off or 3 cups frozen corn
  • 1 bunch of green onions, chopped
  • 1 tube of pre-cooked polenta, such as San Gennaro
  • 8 oz of pepper jack of Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 Tbsp butter or olive oil
Layer in the chili first
Layer in the chili first

Directions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 450F
  2. Melt the butter over medium high in a skillet. Add the corn and cook for 5-6 minutes. Add the green onions and cook for an additional minute.
  3. While the corn is cooking, spread the chili evenly along the bottom of a 9×9″ casserole dish (ours was actually 9.5x 8 or some weird size)
  4. Top the chili with the corn and onion mixture and sprinkle on half the cheese.
  5. Cut the polenta into 12 discs. I usually cut the rounded ends off and save for later. Layer the polenta on top of the cheese, overlapping slightly if necessary.
  6. Top the polenta with the remaining cheese.
  7. Bake the casserole for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese has turned a golden brown. Allow to sit 5 minutes before serving.
Add the half the cheese and then top with the corn and green onion mixture.
Add the half the cheese and then top with the corn and green onion mixture.

     How do you cut the polenta equally? Easy. Cut off the two rounded ends first, these can be saved for something else or tossed. Then cut the polenta in half. Take one half and cut that in half.  Take that half and cut in thirds. Repeat with the rest of the polenta. Or just eyeball it. It’s not rocket science. It doesn’t matter if they are perfect. Lord knows mine weren’t. Layer the polenta on top of the corn mixture, overlapping if necessary.

Polenta layered on top.
Polenta layered on top.

     Top the casserole with the remaining cheese and bake at 450F for 20-25 minutes or until heated through and the cheese is a golden brown.

Mmmm...look at all that cheesy topped goodness. Bet you wish you had smell-a-vision.
Mmmm…look at all that cheesy topped goodness. Bet you wish you had smell-a-vision.

     Now, the hard part. Wait. I know, I know. You want to dig right in. But just like any good casserole, you should wait at least 5 minutes, 10 would be better,  before trying to serve it up. Give it a chance to cool down a little bit and firm up. Otherwise, you are going to have a mess on your hands. Good things come to those who wait.

Not the best picture, but honestly I wasn't sure if we were going to share this.
Not the best picture, but honestly I wasn’t sure if we were going to share this.

     Mrs. G took one bite and all she could say was, “WOW!!” I tried it and immediately knew I was going to share it with you guys. And then immediately felt bad that I didn’t take better pictures to present it better. 😦 I just didn’t think it was going to be that good. The polenta really added another layer of flavor and texture to the whole dish. Honestly, I thought it was going to be ok, but not that good.

     Granted, all that is really dependent on how good your chili is.  If you have bad chili to start with, your casserole is going to be bad. Sorry, I can’t share our chili recipe with you. I’d love to say our chili recipe a closely guarded family secret and that if I told you I’d have to kill you and all that. Actually, all I have is a battered piece of paper that has a list of ingredients that go into it. It doesn’t even have any amounts written down. I just kind of eyeball it and every time it comes out a little different. The only advice I can give you is make sure you have a pretty thick chili, not a watery, soupy one or when you bake it, the polenta will sink and get soggy and that wouldn’t be bueno.

     Next time you make too much chili and you are trying to figure out what to do with it all, try this casserole for a nice change of pace.

Flame Boss Pit Controller – Unboxing

Unboxing of the Flame Boss
Unboxing of the Flame Boss

     Back in October out of the blue, I was contacted by Michael Collins of Flame Boss.

Hi, I am the manufacturing a new product, Flame Boss, a temperature controller that works with BGE. Would you be interested in reviewing it? I welcome your honest feedback.”

     I had never heard of Flame Boss before, but I was floored that somebody would want my feedback on their and of course who doesn’t like new BBQ toys? Some of you may be scratching your heads. What’s a pit controller? Why would I want one?

Flame BossTM manufactures digital temperature controllers for your charcoal or wood burning smoker or grill. The controller monitors the temperature of your smoker and controls a blower that manages the amount of air flowing to the fire, which controls the size of the fire and thus the amount of heat it generates. Flame BossTM uses this mechanism to make your smoker work like an oven. Just set the temperature you want and Flame BossTM will take over. It also functions as a meat thermometer and timer, two tools commonly used by pit masters.

     Flame Boss is a newcomer to the world of pit controllers having just started in 2013. Now, I am no expert when it comes to pit controllers. The only one I have used is the Auber Instruments Pit Controller, but there are quite a lot of players out there ranging from the simple  and inexpensive PartyQ, iQue110, Auber Instruments and NanoQ all the way up to fancy and complex ones like the DigiQ II, StokerWiFi or CyberQII that will control more than one pit and allow you to monitor and control your pit remotely over the internet. It just depends on what you want to do and how much are you willing to spend. Do you want just the basics and start out at around $140? or is the techno geek inside you drooling away at the more impressive and complex ones that you can drop upwards of $500 dollars on? Flame Boss has positioned themselves right in the middle of this market, offering a few more bells and whistles than the simpler ones and coming in at $289 at the time of writing this.

Uh oh!!
Uh oh!!

     When I opened the box that the Flame Boss was shipped in and inspected the package, I noticed that the meat temperature probe was sticking out of the packaging. Not the kind of thing you want to see right away. If I went to a store to purchase one and saw that, I would skip over it and take the one hanging on the rack behind it.  It did appear to be fine and damaged in no way that I could see once I did open the package.

Back of package
Back of package

     The back of the packaging explains some of the features of the Flame Boss. Right away you notice that it has two temperature probes (one for the pit and one for the meat), Open Lid feature and a Ramp Down feature. Those are things that not all of the basic pit controllers offer.

Items included with the Flame Boss
Items included with the Flame Boss

     Once you open the package, you will find the Flame Boss Controller, a 110-240 volt AC power adapter, a pit temperature probe, meat temperature probe, a blower and two separate adapters for your smoker.

Fan controllers side by side
Blower Side by Side Comparison

     Since I already own the Auber Instruments Pit Controller, I thought I would do a side by side comparison of the two units. Keep in mind that the Auber is two years old and has seen some use and abuse, not to mention that their controller has undergone some changes. Whether those are just cosmetic or not, I have no idea. But, it’s what I have and what I can compare it to.

Blowers

          Upon inspection, the blowers from both companies appear to be identical. The one on top is the Flame Boss and the bottom one is from Auber. If you want to get nit picky, the nuts holding the blowers together are different, but the Auber is two years old. The one from Auber is rated at 6.5 CFM (cubic feet per minute). Although not listed on their site, Flame Boss told me that their blower is also rated at 6.5 CFM. They also informed me that they have designed their own housing and have ordered tooling to manufacture it, so expect changes to come once they get up and running

Score: Tie (awaiting new design from Flame Boss)

Pit Temperature Probes
Pit Temperature Probes Side by Side

Pit Temperature Probes

     Both units came with a K type thermocouple to measure the temperature of the pit. They have an alligator clip to attach them to the grate near your meat. According to Auber instrument’s site, their pit probe has a maximum working temperature of 550F. No information was included with the Flame Boss. Wary of burning out a probe, I sent them an e-mail and got a quick response later that same day. They assured their probe is rated to 550F, which they say is probably a conservative number and that it will be addressed on their website and future versions of their packaging. Flame Boss showed great customer service to me with that e-mail.

Score: Tie

Power Adapters Side by Side
Power Adapters Side by Side

Power Adapters

     Power Adapters. They supply the power to the unit. Not much to say about them. They both have little green LED lights so you know they are working. They were interchangeable to both units. Not really something to judge either one on.

Score: Tie (even if not very important)

Mounting Adapters
Mounting Adapters Side by Side

Mounting Adapters    

     Mounting adapters are exactly what they sound like…an adapter that allows you to connect the blower to your smoker. In the picture above, you can see the adapter for Auber Instruments on the left (a bit dirty from years of use) and on the right are the two that come with the Flame Boss. With Auber instruments, you select the smoker you own and they send you the adapter you need. Flame Boss sends you two adapters that allow you to use it on a Medium, Large or XL Big Green Egg, Kamado Joe’ Big Joe 18 and 24 or Primo’s Oval and Kamado Grills. The adapter for the Auber and the one on the bottom for the Flame Boss are identical. If you happen to own multiple ceramic grills from different manufacturers, having two different adapters would be nice.

Score: a slight advantage Flame Boss

Meat Temperatures Side by Side?
Meat Temperature Probes Side by Side?

 Meat Probes

     So in the side by side comparison on the Meat Temperature Probes…wait just a minute. You don’t see two meat temperature probes? Maybe that’s because the Auber doesn’t include one. In fact, the Auber doesn’t have the ability to monitor the temperature of the meat at all.

     The meat probe from Flame Boss appears to be well made, but with no technical details to go on, it’s kind of hard to say much about it. We’ll see how it holds up once we get it up and running.

Score: major advantage Flame Boss

Controllers Side by Side
Controllers Side by Side

Controllers

     I think it would be unfair to compare my Auber controller to the Flame Boss, at least as far as looks go. I don’t know when they did it, but Auber has since undergone a design change. I don’t know if it is just aesthetic, but it no longer looks the same. You can check out their website to see what it looks like now.

     The Flame Boss had a nice, slick black case.  It appears to be well made and sturdy. I’m sure it will get dropped plenty of times and we’ll see how it holds up. There are three buttons on the front, a Menu button and a + and -. Should be simple enough even for a techno-phobe to operate. The buttons feel solid and not cheaply made. IMHO, the Flame Boss just feels more sturdy, durable and well made.

     Maybe its just the guy in me, but personally I don’t care much how something looks. As long as it works and I know it works. All that being said, for looks and quality, I gotta give it to Flame Boss.

Score: Flame Boss

Bottom View
Connector View

Connectors  

The connectors for the Auber are on the bottom when it is lying on a flat surface. From the above picture, you can see that the Auber has three connections. They arent labeled, but the pit probe obviously goes on the right (orange to orange). The probe does have a wide and a narrow pin, so make sure you plug them in accordingly. While the blower and power adapter connectors look similar, the plugs on both are different and are not interchangeable. No worries that you might accidentally plug the wrong one in the wrong spot.

     The connectors for the Flame Boss are in the back when it is sitting flat on a surface. The Flame Boss obviously has one more connector than the Auber since it has a meat probe and all connectors are labeled. Unlike the Auber, the connectors are labeled for easy connection. As with the Auber, no worries about hooking anything up wrong, however. The two temperature probes are not interchangeable and neither are the power and blower.

Score: Flame Boss

Powered Up
Powered Up

Display

     When powered up, you can see that the Auber Instruments Pit Controller has a red LED display. When functioning normally, it only shows one number, the temperature of the pit (Scrolling through the menu, other items will be displayed such as target temperature). Below that, there are two LED indicator lights. The one on the left, OUT(AT) lights up to indicate that the blower is on. The one on the right, AL, lights up when the alarm sounds.

     Flame Boss has a backlit LCD screen featuring a green background and black characters. In addition to alerting you to the temperature of your pit, it also tells you the set temperature, the temperature of the meat and how hard your blower is working (%). More info is definitely a bonus.

View in the dark
View in the dark

     A majority of my cooks that I use a pit controller for are overnight cooks. It only made sense that I would have to take a compare the displays of both units in the dark. Sometimes, I peek through the windows or poke my head out the door to check on how things are going (even though I know there is no reason too). The Auber is easier to see in the dark and from a distance with its bright red LED light. While you can see the green LCD screen of the Flame Boss, making out any information from far away requires much better eyes than I have

     Even though the Auber is easier to see in the dark, I feel the amount of information displayed by Flame Boss makes it a winner in the display category.

Score: Flame Boss

Summary

     So I’ve unpacked the Flame Boss and I’ve looked it over. I’ve compared it to Auber. While they both have very similar appearing blowers (as of right now), pit probes, mounting adaptor and power adaptors, I have to say that the Flame Boss takes the edge. The amount of information on the display far outweighs the ease of read of the Auber’s display. The inclusion of a meat thermometer, I believe, is almost a necessity and the look and feel of the controller wins hands down.

     Don’t get me wrong. The Auber is a great little unit and you can get your hands on it for $134.50 + S&H (as of the time writing this post). A great low-cost, basic entry level controller. No bells. No whistles. Just controls your pit. If that’s all you want, you won’t be disappointed in it.

     But look at some of the other features you can get with the Flame Boss. A Learning PID controller, open lid detect, variable speed blower, meat temperature alarm and a ramp down function (all of which we’ll discuss in a later post). Is that worth the extra $154.40 (Flame Boss comes in at $289.00 + S&H)? That’s something only you can decide.

     I know what you are probably thinking. Yeah, its great reading all that stuff and learning about it, but how well does it work? To be honest, I’ve only used it once so far, but I was impressed. I don’t feel like I’ve used it enough to really form an educated opinion on it yet, but first impressions were positive. If it performs half as well as I think it will, I wouldn’t be upset to see this sitting under my tree on Christmas morning.

     Friday night will be the big night. I’ve got an Angus Choice full packer brisket sitting in the fridge right now, ready to take on the challenge of the Flame Boss. We’ll see how it works and report back to you next week. As of right now, I am totally confident that it can get the job done.

Auber Instruments

Flame Boss

**Disclaimer – I was not paid in any way to write the above review. I have no links or ties to either Auber Instruments or Flame Boss. In fact, Flame Boss offered to include a return shipping label so that I could send back their unit after reviewing it if I felt keeping it would compromise my judgement or make me feel impartial.

Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup

Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup
Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup

     It’s not very often I stumble on a recipe (actually Mrs. G stumbled on this one), try it out and immediately think to myself, “I’ve got to share this one with my readers.” See, the thing is we are not real good at following recipes. We’ll use it as a broad outline, maybe change a few things to better suit our tastes or use what we have on hand. Such was not the case when we made this soup last week. We followed this recipe to the “T”. Ok…we almost did. The ingredients are exactly the same, but we changed the process just a hair.

     Now, before we go any further, I’ve got to give credit where credit is due. This Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup came from Maria and Josh over at Two Peas and Their Pod. I sent them an e-mail and they graciously allowed me to share this soup with you guys. I haven’t checked out their whole site, but they’ve got quite a few things I can’t wait to try out myself.

Home made Hot Italian Sausage
Home made Hot Italian Sausage

     The first and only change we made to their ingredients was to use Hot Italian Sausage. Normally, when  I see Italian Sausage in a recipe, I figure they mean regular. Hot usually works as well and it just so happened we had one last pound of it in our freezer. I think that’s how Mrs. G found this recipe. She was looking for something to do with it. Anyway, I cut the casings off the sausage and rolled it up into little meatballs and browned it off in a skillet.

     The second change I made was to take a little bit of chicken stock and de-glaze the skillet. I figured why let all those good bits go to waste? The de-glazed skillet was set aside until it was time to add the remainder of the broth to the veggies.

     In their third and final step, they immediately added in the kale and the tortellini, cooked it for 7-8 minutes, then added in the fresh basil and sausage meatballs. That works for them and would make a quick weeknight meal. I don’t know about you, but I like to let my soups simmer for as long as possible. Let those flavors really develop. So after their step two, I added in the broth (including the “good bits” from the de-glazed skillet), the tomatoes and the sausage meatballs and let it simmer…and simmer…and simmer some more. Probably for two hours while I was waiting for Mrs. G to get home.

Adding in the tortellini.
Adding in the tortellini.

     Once Mrs. G got home and was ready to eat, we added in the kale and tortellini and allowed it to cook for about 7-8 minutes, then added in the fresh basil and let it cook for a few more minutes. Final taste, adjusted any seasonings needed (we didn’t need to) and serve it up.

This soup was just screaming for a little bit fo freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
This soup was just screaming for a little bit fo freshly grated Parmesan cheese on top.

     Maria said in her post that this”…Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup is hearty, full of flavor, and easy to make” and boy is she right!! It packs in a bunch of flavors. Hearty, spicy Italian sausage, tortellini filled with cheese, kale, red peppers and fresh basil! It was so good I went back for seconds and kept telling Mrs. G throughout dinner that I was going to have to share it with our readers. I think our version probably was spicier than hers due to using Hot Italian Sausage, but it wasn’t overpowering. Use either one depending on how your tastes run, but definitely try it soon. I know you will be impressed. I can see us making it quite a few more times as the weather begins to get cooler and we enter the winter months.

For the whole recipe and directions, make sure to click on this link  Italian Sausage Tortellini Soup and tell Josh and Maria we sent ya. 😉