It’s the time of year to break out the crock pot and get creative or just plain palate pleasing. A nice start for the fall is this satisfying and delicious creamy sausage stew. Don’t be afraid to experiment by adding your favorite spices: mine is the delightful Za’Atar: The Holy Hyssop Galilee Aromatic Blend that I brought back with me from Israel last year. I also added beer: in this case the seasonal Samuel Adams Jack-O Pumpkin Ale.
Slow Cooker Creamy Sausage Stew
6 medium red or white potatoes cubed
2 cups chopped onion
1 large clove garlic chopped
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 red bell pepper (diced)
1 green bell pepper (diced)
2 ribs celery (thinly sliced)
2 medium carrots (thinly sliced)
12 to 16 ounces andouille sausage or sausage of your choice
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon dried leaf basil
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning blend
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or ground lemon pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or ground dried garlic
1 (10 3/4-ounce) can condensed cream of potato soup diluted with one can of ½ chicken stock and ½ milk.
1/2 cup light cream (or heavy cream)
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons cold water
2/3 bottle of pumpkin beer or ale
Lightly grease or oil the crockery insert of a 4-quart or larger slow cooker.
Combine the cubed potatoes, chopped onion, garlic, red and green bell pepper, celery, carrots, and sausage in a large bowl.
In a small bowl, combine the olive oil with the dried leaf basil, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder. Add to the potato and sausage mixture and stir to coat thoroughly. Stir in the potato soup.
Pour into crock pot and cook covered on high for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or on low for 4-6 hours, or until the vegetables are tender. Add beer to the stew after two hours.
Once the veggies are tender, combine the cornstarch, cream, and cold water, whisking until smooth. Add to the stew. Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until the stew is thickened.
Taste and adjust salt, pepper, and other seasonings as needed.