Sausage, Veggie and Two-Cheese Melt

Sandwiches make a great weeknight treat, and if you use a little imagination, you can get your protein, carbs and veggies all in one handy little package. For this sandwich, we combined crumbled Italian sausage, mushrooms, sautéed spinach, fresh tomato, provolone and gorgonzola cheese on a hollowed-out French style sandwich roll. The end result was full of flavor, easy to eat and deliciously satisfying.

Sausage, Veggie and Two-Cheese Melt
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  • Ingredients:
  • 1 lb Italian sausage, removed from the casings
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 ounces fresh spinach
  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • 1 cup gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
  • 4 thick slices provolone cheese
  • 4 French-style sandwich rolls, sliced

Preparation:
Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until softened, 2 minutes. Add the garlic and continue cooking, 1 minute more. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until browned, 4 to 6 minutes longer.

Add the sausage, crushed red pepper and oregano. Cook until the sausage is lightly browned, breaking up any large chunks with a wooden spoon. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Drain any excess fat from the pan and increase the heat to medium-high. Add the spinach and cook, tossing with tongs, until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Preheat the broiler and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. If desired, hollow out the top and bottom of each roll to make a well. Lay them out on the baking sheet and place a portion of the gorgonzola on the top half of each roll. Top with some sautéed spinach and a slice of provolone cheese.

Add a portion of the sausage mixture on the other half of each roll and top with a slice of tomato. Place the sandwiches under the broiler for 4 to 6 minutes, or until the provolone is melted and bubbly. Assemble the sandwiches and serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings

Recipe Notes:
Be sure to taste the sausage-mushroom mixture before adding salt. Depending on the flavoring of the sausage, you may find that you don't need much (or any) salt.

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