Rush Hour

Winter is about comfort food to me and you don't get more winter than ice storms and blizzards of February. When I find these at my door, I turn to soups and stews to warm me inside and out. This month, I'm bringing you a new favorite of mine. The combination of smoky sausage and tender chicken with lots of great vegetables makes this a hearty one-dish meal, although I like serving mine with cheese biscuits.

Because it's easily served in a bowl or small crock, this stew is perfect for enjoying in front of a roaring fire while wrapped in a blanket. Now that's a great way to keep Old Man Winter at bay!

As always, I encourage you to share your recipe ideas and comments. You can always post comments using the forms provided in the articles or email me directly at . Enjoy!

Sausage and Chicken Stew

  • 4 Italian sausages
  • 2-3 chicken breasts, cut in 1" cubes
  • 1/2 each red and green peppers, chopped
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut in 1" cubes
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 - 28 oz. can diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil - or 1/2 chopped fresh
  • 1/2 cup ketchup - optional
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Slice the sausages and brown them in a large soup pot, set aside. Brown the chicken, set aside. Sauté the peppers, potatoes, mushrooms, onion, garlic and celery until tender. Add the meat, chicken broth, oregano, tomatoes and ketchup, if using, (and the basil if you're using dried) and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Stir occasionally. Add the basil last if it's fresh, plus salt and pepper, if you need it.

  • Yields: 4-6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes