Simple Summer Supper

     This is a quick and easy summer supper.  This dish really helps stretch your food budget because it stretches the meat portion of the meal considerably.  For the five of us, I use about 3/4 lb. of meat, and there is usually a bit left over to freeze in a container for Copper to take to work for lunch.
     Saute chopped onion and garlic in a bit of oil in a cast iron skillet.  Crumble in some bulk sausage.  (Our favorites, handcrafted in a local market, are mild Italian, Burgundy Pepper, and Pineapple Teriyaki).  You might also use a bit of raw chicken, turkey, pork or beef cut into cubes.  Season to taste.  Cook until done.   

     Meanwhile, begin bringing a pot of salted water to the boil.  Add in enough pasta for your family and cook.  (We like penne, Wacky Mac, rigatoni, macaroni and spaghetti)

     What vegetables are available?  Chopped bell pepper, chopped or thinly sliced carrots, zucchini, spinach, chard, sugar snap peas, and green beans can all be added to the skillet to cook.  Remember that thicker veggies will need longer to cook than thin.    Fresh broccoli, sliced summer squash, zucchini  and green beans can be put into the boiling water with the pasta to cook.  Add as many or as few vegetables as you desire, but be sure to consider textures, taste and color. 

     This dish is best with the veggies cooked crisp-tender and the pasta al dente.

     Once the meat and pasta are cooked, drain the pasta (and any veggies cooked with the pasta) and add to the skillet.  Toss to combine.  Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese (or milder cheese if you prefer), toss again and allow to set for a minute or two to melt cheese.  Enjoy!

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