By People Staff
December 08, 2014 12:00 PM

Entertaining, Food, Travel and Home

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Sausage & Peppers Hero Melt

The actress and coauthor of The Pollan Family Table prepares a hearty sub her family loves

2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 lb. Italian sausage (a mix of sweet and hot)

1 large yellow onion, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced

4 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 large green bell pepper, cut into ¼-in. strips

1 large red bell pepper, cut into ¼-in. strips

1 large yellow or orange bell pepper, cut into ¼-in. strips

½ tsp. dried oregano

1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes

½ tsp. Kosher salt

1 (8-oz.) can tomato sauce

4 Italian hero or sub sandwich rolls (8-in.)

8-10 slices provolone cheese

1. In a large heavy skillet, heat 1 tbsp. of the oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add the sausages and cook, turning with tongs, until they are browned on all sides and no longer pink in the middle, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel–lined plate to drain. When cool, move the sausages to a cutting board and slice in half lengthwise, then crosswise in thirds.

2. Wipe the pan clean with paper towels. Heat the remaining 1 tbsp. of oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the onions and cook until soft and golden, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the bell peppers, oregano, red pepper flakes and salt and mix well. Continue to sauté until the peppers are lightly charred and tender, about 8 minutes.

3. Return the sausages to the pan and add the tomato sauce. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until heated through, about 8 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the broiler.

4. Split the rolls in half lengthwise and hollow out some of the bread on each of the bottom halves, forming a cavity. Put the rolls cut side up on a rimmed baking sheet, and place an equal portion of the sausages and peppers on each roll bottom. Top these with provolone cheese. Broil until the bread crisps and the cheese melts, 2 to 4 minutes. Close the heroes and serve hot.

Serves: 4

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 45 minutes

Ricotta Dumplings with Pecans

The chefs behind N.Y.C. hot spot Root & Bone share a cozy, comforting dish

1 lb. whole-milk ricotta, drained

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ tsp. lemon zest

1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

2 eggs

Baking powder

1½ cup flour, sifted

Kosher salt

1 stick unsalted butter

½ cup pecans, roasted

1 cup diced pumpkin, roasted, or 1 cup frozen cubed butternut squash

1 tbsp. thinly sliced sage leaves

Freshly ground black pepper

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a simmer over medium heat.

2. Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Fold in a pinch of baking powder, flour and ½ tsp. salt until just combined. Transfer mixture into a piping bag or large zip-top bag (cut off one corner to make a quarter-size opening). Pipe out 1 in. of the dough and cut with a knife or kitchen shears directly over the water. Repeat until the bag is empty. Cook the dumplings for about 1 minute on each side. Drain and set aside.

3. In separate sauté pan, heat butter and pecans over medium heat until the butter starts to brown, about 2 minutes. Add cooked dumplings, pumpkin (or defrosted butter- nut squash) and sage; season with salt and pepper. Serve with more pecans and Parmesan, as desired.

Serves: 4

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Dress an Elegant Holiday Table

The Suits star and founder of lifestyle site creates a look that ‘feels special but not fussed over’


“Pair them with classic white or ivory linens.” Leaves Metal Napkin Rings, $19.90 for 4;


“They’re rustic and a little fancy with the gilded rims.”

Gold Rimmed Dessert Plates, $56 for 2;


“Instead of using them as mugs, fill them with white flowers and rosemary for a pop of color.” Moscow Mule Copper Mug, $16.95;


“I love the subtle festivity of this runner—and at such a great value!” Cotton Table Runner, $9.95;


“Weathered metal is very vintage-chic-looking.”

Glass Candlestick, $9.95;


“These knives look beautiful on a simple wooden chopping block.” Langholm Cheese Knives, $36 for 3;


“I have guests write what they are grateful for in a sweet holiday journal. And you can add to it every year.” Wishbone Watercolor Notebook, $16 for 2;