Smoked Turkey Sausage & Israeli Couscous Skillet

I think summer is officially here because I am feeling the humidity!  I’m pretty sure I should just stop doing my hair.  I must admit though that we had a great spring.  And summer did arrive a little more slowly than usual so I can’t complain.  It’s all about tank tops and flip flops from here on out!

It’s about Thursday nights downtown with friends.  It’s about practice hikes carrying 35 pounds on my back.  It’s about farmer’s markets, cold iced tea, sweet strawberries and lake sunsets.

It’s also about quick, easy and light meals.  And when I’m not overdoing it with my new-found enchilada obsession, I’m digging into my other new-found obsession – smoked turkey sausage.


Smoked Turkey Sausage & Israeli Couscous Skillet

I have made multiple turkey sausage skillets over the past couple of months with various veggies, various forms of pasta, different flavors and spices, etc.  And the common thread among all of them has been the turkey sausage.  It’s so flavorful – the fact that it’s turkey doesn’t even cross your mind.  It browns beautifully and quickly and bonus – much healthier than pork sausage!  It is swimsuit season, after all.

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Smoked Turkey Sausage & Israeli Couscous Skillet

Yield: 4 servings

Total Time: 35 min

A simple skillet meal with smoked turkey sausage & Israeli couscous, broccoli, sun-dried tomatoes, Asiago cheese and pine nuts.

Ingredients:

1 cup uncooked pearl couscous
1 pound Smoked Turkey Sausage, sliced into 1/2-inch coins
1 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 cup yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 pound chopped broccoli florets
2/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (or blistered grape tomatoes)
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
2 cups chicken or veggie broth, divided
1 Tbs. cornstarch
2 Tbs. pine nuts
1/2 cup Asiago cheese

Directions:

Cook the couscous according to package directions. Toast the pine nuts in a small pan until brown.
Brown the sausage on both sides in a large pan. Remove & set aside. Add the olive oil to the pan along with the onions and garlic and a pinch of salt. Stir to scrape up the browned pits and cook until the onions are tender, about 5 minutes. Add the broccoli, sun-dried tomatoes and red pepper flakes and cook for another 5-6 minutes.

Add 1 cup of the broth and stir. Bring to a simmer. Add salt and pepper to taste. In a small bowl, whisk the remaining broth with the cornstarch. Add the cooked couscous to the rest of the ingredients. When the broth is simmering, add the broth/cornstarch mixture and stir well. Simmer until the sauce thickens. Adjust seasonings to taste and stir in the cheese.

Cassie's Notes:
A few variations to this meal that we have tried and loved:
-add 1-2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar after the broth/cornstarch mixture is added
-replace the broccoli with 1-inch pieces of fresh asparagus or with halved Brussels sprouts
-add some sliced mushrooms
-replace the sun-dried tomatoes with blistered grape tomatoes (blister the tomatoes by roasting, tossed in olive oil and salt & pepper, in a 425 degree oven for about 25 minutes)

Smoked Turkey Sausage & Israeli Couscous Skillet