Sausage and Fennel Cast-Iron Pizza

Sausage and Fennel Cast-Iron Pizza

Sausage and Fennel Cast-Iron Pizza

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Sausage and Fennel Cast Iron Pizza baked hot and bubbly and garnished with fennel fronds.

I say start the new year with pizza! Yes, that’s right, crispy, cheesy, flavour-packed Sausage and Fennel Cast-Iron Pizza. We can not make just any pizza, it truly needs to be a cast-iron pizza to start the new year right. It creates the best golden and crisp underside that you’ll ever create at home, and you’ll wonder why you haven’t been making all your pizzas this way. Most new year resolutions include some form of healthy eating, but I think the new year (because it’s gonna be great) deserves full-on, carefree, in your face deliciousness. The sausage and fennel combination has not only become my new favourite, cooking it in a cast-iron pan tips it over the edge of my pizza nirvana. So move over plain ol’ pepperoni pizza… grown-up pizza just walked in.

A cast iron skillet full of of ingredients for Sausage and Fennel Cast Iron Pizza.
Pizza dough, marinara sauce and fennel ready for Sausage and Fennel Cast Iron Pizza.

With the new year upon us, we have no choice but to be hopeful for a more user-friendly year. Even though I can consider 2020 a good year, it hasn’t been without its frustrations, and for many people, it has been a year of hardship and heartache. While we can’t eat cheesy, sausage laden pizza all the time, it’s a good reminder to enjoy a few of the simpler things that we can. It’s also great fun to create homemade pizza at home with loved ones lending a helping hand.

All the best in 2021, let’s eat!

Sausage and Fennel Cast Iron Pizza garnished with fennel fronds and cut into slices on a black cutting board.

Sausage and Fennel Cast Iron Pizza garnished with fennel fronds and cut into slices on a black cutting board.
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Sausage and Fennel Cast-Iron Pizza

Course Main Course
Keyword baked, cast iron, cast iron pizza, fennel, garlic, Italian sausage, mozzerella, olive oil, pizza, pizza dough
Cook Time 14 minutes
Resting time 5 minutes
Servings 2 people

Ingredients

  • 8-10 ounces pizza dough homemade or store-bought
  • 8 ounces Italian sausage about 2 links, casing removed
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil divided
  • 1/3 cup marinara sauce homemade or store bought
  • 3 ounces shredded mozzarella about 3/4 cup
  • 1/2 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced plus fronds for garnish
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • red pepper flakes

Instructions

  • Set oven rack to its uppermost position. Preheat oven to 475°F.
  • Drizzle room temperature pizza dough with 1 tbsp olive oil and press out to a 10" round. Cover loosely with plastic wrap.
  • Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a 10" cast-iron skillet. Add Italian sausage and cook over medium, breaking up any large pieces. Once cooked and slightly crisp remove to a paper towel-lined plate.
  • With the heat still on medium/low, immediately lay pizza dough in the pan, stretching out to the edges using a spatula or spoon if necessary. Top dough with marinara, then mozzarella, fennel, garlic and sausage. Drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil and check the underside which should be starting to brown and crisp. Transfer pan to oven and bake until bubbling, about 10-14 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes, then sprinkle with red pepper flakes, and fennel fronds or fresh basil. Lift out of the pan and cut into wedges and serve.

Notes

-The dough will press out better on a wooden surface such as a cutting board as opposed to granite or super-smooth surfaces.
-I prefer a thinner crust and opt for 8 ounces of dough vs 10.  It is 10 ounces pictured in the blog.
-Makes one 10" pizza, however, a 12" cast-iron skillet would work too, just use the 10 ounces of dough.  There's plenty of topping, so there's no need to adjust unless you'd like more cheese.
-The original recipe from Bon Appétit suggests garnishing with fresh basil, however, I enjoy using fresh fennel fronds instead, but it's a matter of preference and both are delicious. 

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Broccoli Cheddar Frittata

Broccoli Cheddar Frittata

Broccoli Cheddar Frittata

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Broccoli Cheddar Frittata cooked in a cream coloured cast iron skillet and resting on a wicker trivet.

Simple is delicious, and this lovely Broccoli Cheddar Frittata is an excellent example! Easy to prepare and cook, and it’s made with ingredients you likely have on hand. Ready in about 45 minutes and makes a great brunch or breakfast dish. But I think it makes an equally delicious light lunch served with a salad or a heartier dinner served with pan-fried potatoes. It’s one of those dishes that is multi-serving and perfect for any meal.

Cooked broccoli in a cast iron skillet with a bowl of whisked eggs and milk in the background in preparation for Broccoli Cheddar Frittata.

This dish is one of the reasons I love eggs so much. They pack plenty of nutrition and cook quickly, allowing you to get a healthy and satisfying meal on the table without too much fuss. Lots of melty cheese means the kids just might like it too. Enjoy!

Tips:

-Don’t overcook! The frittata is done when the centre is just starting to set and still jiggles a little. It will continue to firm up as it rests.

-Use good quality eggs.

-Be sure to let the frittata rest as it allows the eggs to firm up and makes for easy cutting.

-Don’t be shy with your favourite ingredients. If you don’t like onions, add a little red pepper or spice it up with a few chill flakes or different herbs.

-Use full fat cheddar cheese as it melts nicer than light or reduced fat cheese.

-A lower fat sour cream can be used but the full fat adds to the frittata’s creaminess and overall texture.

A slice of Broccoli Chedddar Frittata served with a garden salad on a white plate and resting on a green and white checkered kitchen towel.

A slice of Broccoli Chedddar Frittata served with a garden salad on a white plate and resting on a green and white checkered kitchen towel.
Broccoli Cheddar Frittata
Print Recipe
    Servings Prep Time
    6-8 servings 20 minutes
    Cook Time Passive Time
    15-18 minutes 5-10 minutes
    Servings Prep Time
    6-8 servings 20 minutes
    Cook Time Passive Time
    15-18 minutes 5-10 minutes
    A slice of Broccoli Chedddar Frittata served with a garden salad on a white plate and resting on a green and white checkered kitchen towel.
    Broccoli Cheddar Frittata
    Print Recipe
      Servings Prep Time
      6-8 servings 20 minutes
      Cook Time Passive Time
      15-18 minutes 5-10 minutes
      Servings Prep Time
      6-8 servings 20 minutes
      Cook Time Passive Time
      15-18 minutes 5-10 minutes
      Ingredients
      Servings: servings
      Instructions
      1. Preheat oven to 350°F and set a rack in the middle position.
      2. In a large bowl whisk together eggs and sour cream. Add milk, mustard powder, oregano, salt and pepper and whisk to fully combine. Stir in half of the cheese. Set aside.
      3. Add oil to a 10" cast-iron skillet over medium heat. When hot add the onion and garlic and sauté until starting to soften about 3 minutes.
      4. Add broccoli and water to the pan and cover to steam the broccoli until just tender about 3 minutes. Remove lid and stir in green onions and whisked egg mixture. Allow to cook over medium-low on the stove for 3-5 until the edge is just starting to set. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and place in the oven. Bake for 12-15 minutes until just starting to set in the centre (it should jiggle a little in the centre). Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.
      5. Cut into desired wedges and serve immediately.
      Recipe Notes

      -Use frozen broccoli if that's what you have, just be sure to thaw completely and pat dry before using.  Add to skillet after cooking the onion and cook just to warm (don't add water) before continuing with the recipe.

      -Gruyére cheese would also be a nice substitute for the cheddar.

      -The cooked frittata will keep for several days well wrapped in the fridge and can be rewarmed gently in the microwave.  It does not freeze well.

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      Affiliate Disclosure

      I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
      Lamb Meatballs with Olives and Feta

      Lamb Meatballs with Olives and Feta

      Do you like lamb?  I certainly do, and I believe it’s a meat you either like or don’t.  I also believe that some people associate lamb with mutton, which has turned them away from it. Mutton is from the same animal as lamb, but stronger in taste and usually much tougher due to the age of the animal.  Mutton is meat from a sheep that is 1-3 years old, which yields a stronger, gamier taste, and is tougher due to the muscles working longer.  Lamb, on the other hand, is meat from young lambs that are less than a year old.  Young spring lamb is tender and milder in comparison to mutton.

       

      My personal favourite in cuts of lamb is chops, specifically grilled chops, which are delicious with a mustard rub.  I also enjoy lean ground lamb and lamb shoulder.  The wonderful thing about lamb is that it can take on robust, bold flavours and pairs wonderfully with the tomatoes and olives in this Mediterranean style dish.  Saucy, rustic and full of flavour, Lamb Meatballs with Olives and Feta is a welcome change from regular beef meatballs. Perfect with rice or toasty bread!  Enjoy!

      If you’re a lamb lover like me, you’ll also want to try Braised Lamb Shoulder. Fork tender lamb shoulder braised in a creamy mushroom sauce.

       

      Recipe source for Lamb Meatballs with Olives and Feta:  Compelled to Cook

      Lamb Meatballs with Olives and Feta
      Print Recipe
        Servings Prep Time
        3-4 people 30-35 minutes
        Cook Time
        45-50 minutes
        Servings Prep Time
        3-4 people 30-35 minutes
        Cook Time
        45-50 minutes
        Lamb Meatballs with Olives and Feta
        Print Recipe
          Servings Prep Time
          3-4 people 30-35 minutes
          Cook Time
          45-50 minutes
          Servings Prep Time
          3-4 people 30-35 minutes
          Cook Time
          45-50 minutes
          Ingredients
          Meatballs
          Sauce
          Servings: people
          Instructions
          Meatballs
          1. Add all ingredients except oil to a large bowl. Gently combine with your hands or a wooden spoon. Roll mixture into 17-18 evenly sized meatballs approximately 1 1/4 ounces each.
          2. Heat oil in a cast iron or oven safe skillet over medium heat until hot. Arrange meatballs in a single layer and brown on all sides, about 20 minutes. Remove meatballs to a paper towel lined plate and drain all but 1 tbsp of fat from skillet.
          Sauce
          1. Preheat oven to 350℉.
          2. To the skillet add chopped shallot and garlic, sauté for 2-3 minutes over medium heat until soft, stirring often. Pour in white wine to deglaze the pan, stirring to scrape up any browned bits in the pan. Add chicken broth and allow to simmer for about 2 minutes.
          3. Using your hands, crush tomatoes and add to skillet along with oregano, paprika and pepper. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Add meatballs back to pan, stirring to coat with sauce.
          4. Place in oven uncovered and bake for 20-25 minutes until sauce is reduced, stirring once. Remove from oven and stir to coat with sauce. Sprinkle with feta cheese and olives, return to oven for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and garnish with chopped red onion and fresh oregano if desired and serve immediately on top of rice or with crusty bread.
          Recipe Notes

          -dampened hands help to roll meatballs.