Not only is turkey sausage a healthier alternative to regular sausage:
Compare the difference:
100 grams Italian Sausage: 323 calories, 26 grams fat
100 grams turkey sausage: 88 calories, 8.75 grams fat
This would be a nice recipe to put together for a casual weekend dinner party or on a weekday evening when you have time to putz around the kitchen.
It isn't a difficult dish to put together, but it does it adhere to the philosophy that good things take time and will need to simmer.
But oh how worth it the simmering is because the sauce ends up being a flavourful, fresh, zesty, yummy, delicious accompaniment to the pasta!
And I experimented with a new product for this meal: Olivieri Lasagna Sheets
They were easy to work with and the pasta held it's texture nicely during the baking time. Though you could stuff the sauce into manicotti shells, or use dried lasagna noodles, using these sheets is an easy alternative for baked pastas that I will come back to again.
And because this dish likes a little simmer time, what better than to put on a little cooking music and open a nice bottle of red wine.
I served a Spanish wine with this dinner called Sangre de Toro and I highly recommend it.
This delicious Spanish wine is affordable, fruity, velvety, and pairs beautifully with hearty family style dishes like this.
So mangia mangia!
Pass the garlic bread, and enjoy this lovely meal!
Cheesey Turkey Manicotti
For printable recipe click HERE
Prep time: 60 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 1 1/2 pounds turkey sausage, casings removed
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 2 large cloves minced garlic
- 1 cup low sodium chicken stock
- 1/3 cup red wine
- 1/2 cup black olives, sliced and pitted
- 1 540 ml (18 fluid ounce) can Aylmer's Accents Tomatoes or other brand of low sodium stewed tomatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional, or decrease amount if you like your sauce less spicy)
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup feta cheese
- 6 Oliveri lasagna sheets
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup fresh grated parmesan
- Heat olive oil on medium high in a non stick pan and saute the turkey sausage, and onions, until the meat is cooked and begins to brown and stick to bottom of pan.
- Add thyme, oregano, basil, and minced garlic. Stir well to incorporate.
- Add chicken stock and stir well to get any brown bits off the bottom of the pan.
- Add the wine. Bring to a boil and continue to simmer on medium heat until the stock and wine have almost completely reduced.
- Add the olives, tomatoes, bay leaf, balsamic vinegar, salt to taste, and cayenne pepper if using. Bring to a good simmer then reduce heat to medium low. Cover and simmer 30 minutes.
- Add 1/4 cup parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup feta cheese and stir to incorporate.Add spinach just until it wilts.
- Rub a lasagna pan with olive oil and put a ladle full of sauce on the bottom of the pan.
- Put a ladle or two into the center of each lasagna sheet and carefully roll. Place seam side down in lasagna pan.
- Cover rolls with remaining sauce and shredded cheeses
- Bake covered in a 350 oven for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake until cheeses are golden and bubbly.
- Let rest on countertop ten minutes before serving.
Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.
Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.