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Polish Sausage

Yield: 4 servings

1 lb ground meat (used lean ground chicken 1st try)
1.5 tsp minced garlic (use ½ if using garlic powder)
1.5 tsp salt
1.5 tsp brown sugar
0.75 tsp ground pepper
0.75 tsp marjoram (or sub with oregano or basil)
⅛ tsp allspice (or sub with clove + cinnamon + nutmeg + ginger)
Liquid smoke to taste

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Recipe recommends combining and chilling 8 hrs or overnight…. I don’t have that kind of time before lunch so we’ll see how it goes, but I did have it chilling for at least an hour while I made Polish cucumber/dill salad. The other recipe I found didn’t mention chilling prior to filling the casings so I think it will be fine. Mixture didn’t smell much like Polish sausage, so I fried up a tsp as a test in case seasonings needed major adjustment. NOPE! It was really good!!

Spray pan with olive oil (and spray tops of the burgers once you’ve added them to the pan because lean ground chicken typically likes to stick….). I found that wetting a silicone spatula and dividing up the meat worked pretty well to portion blobs into the pan, then used wet fingers to press them down into facsimiles of burger patties. Didn’t even bother trying to use my burger press w/ wax paper because lean ground chicken really likes to stick to wax paper! I did spray the interior of a plastic sandwich bag for the extra meat that I put into the freezer in hopes that it doesn’t totally stick to the inside of the bag upon thawing. . . I’ll try to remember to take it out of the bag frozen and let it thaw on a sprayed plate!

This turned out fantastic! Since I only indulge in “the real deal” at best on Easter and/or Christmas, I found the taste 100% acceptable as a stand-in ☺️ Wow. . . totally guilt-free Polish sausage. I think I’ve died and gone to heaven!!!!!! If you’re a regular Polish sausage-eater, I would not recommend doing a side-by-side taste test, but if you’re open-minded and prefer a much healthier alternative, I’d give this a try.

Polish Cucumber & Dill Salad

Yield ~ 2 servings

Slice up the amount of cucumber you want. First attempt I used about 3” of a leftover English cucumber + 1 mini cucumber and that seemed adequate. I’d estimate 2 mini cucumbers would suffice as well. Place slices in a strainer to let them weep off excess water - let stand however long you want to wait. I wanted at least ½ an hour and not a drop so will probably skip this next time. Although truth be told, the recipe said to salt the slices and I didn’t want to both salt the slices AND add salt to the dressing.

For the Dressing, combine:

~3 Tbsp plain, nonfat, Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
~1 Tbsp lemon juice
~1 Tbsp dill
S&P to taste

Once cucumbers have drained, just mix them into the dressing, top with some additional dill and that’s all she wrote. I suppose you could easily call this a Greek cucumber salad as well. I can easily see variations that include sliced radishes, maybe some grated carrot for extra color. Ah…. red onion!

YES - added just the diced red onion to the first attempt and that made it a home run.