Friday, June 13, 2014

“Italian Sausage With Peppers & Onions” For Friday The 13th "Good Luck"

Today is Friday the 13th — the unluckiest day on the calendar. Be careful, don’t take any chances, or walk under a ladder, watch out, it’s a black cat---oh no, and for God’s sake stay away from men in hockey masks. 

In Italy the number 13 is a lucky number. Superstition has played a role for many centuries; it dates back to a least 1700 BC. The number’s association with Friday didn’t take hold until the 20th century. In 1907, an eccentric Boston stockbroker Thomas Lawson published a book called “Friday the Thirteenth.” The book sold nearly 28,000 copies in the first week. In 1916 the book was turned into a feature-length silent film. Then in 1980, Paramount Pictures released a movie called “Friday the 13th” This horror, slasher movie centers on Jason, born on Friday the 13th who murders summer campers. So, try not to go to camp on Friday the 13th....
You have been warned!!

Omens reveal many things and are all around us. They can be quite beneficial especially in warning us of possible dangerous situations ahead of time. The technique is knowing how to interpret them. The kitchen is one place in which many omens and superstitions manifest. This is an example of one of them, if a fork accidentally falls onto the floor, a woman will soon knock on your door, which indicates the arrival of a gentleman. (In some parts of the world, the fork means a man, and the spoon means a woman.) Another one is that money will soon come your way if any of these things occur: bubbles appear in a cup of coffee, you accidentally knock over a sugar bowl, rice forms a ring around the edge of a pot, or tea leaves float to the top of the cup. If you spill salt that means a quarrel. This may be avoided by throwing a pinch over the left shoulder. If pepper is spilled on the table or floor, prepare to be in an argument. If you dream of eating ham. Then you will lose something that means a lot to you. If you dream of eating honey that foretells that you will have wealth and love.

Growing up in an Italian American household, many of these rituals and beliefs were practiced by family members. Generations of Italian Americans were superstitions and took to heart these traditions. The fact that these superstitions are still with us is a testament to just how strong forces of good luck, prosperity, and good fortune are even with us in today’s world. The following are some commonly known Italian American rituals and superstitions. There are many more to numerous to mention, but this may give you an example of some of them.

The Evil Eye (Malocchio): The evil eye is caused by jealousy and envy. By coveting somebody’s possessions or more importantly admiring another family’s children. You can test this curse, by dropping olive oil in a plate of water. If the oil formed one large drop in the middle of the plate it was a sure sign of the Evil Eye. To break this curse, chanting of the right prayers that only women were allowed to know, over the oil, and it would break up into tiny droplets and spread out. Now the curse was broken.

The Devil’s Horn (Corno): These twisted red coral; gold or silver amulets are often worn as necklaces by men to ward off curses on their “manliness” very similar to a Mojo. Most men who wear one will say it represents one of the horns of the devil. The hand gesture that implies the Evil Eye is extending only the pinkie and index finger like a pair of horns and pointing it down. When the gesture is made pointing upward, it is an insult to somebody, meaning their husband or wife is unfaithful.  

Blessing or Exorcising a New House: Esorcismo di S Benedetto - Some Southern Italians (Sicilians) immigrating to new lands as they moved into their first new home, would practice the necessary rituals to rid the new place of any spirits that may have been left by the previous owners. Before moving in to their new home, they would take a broom and sweep away the evil spirits, followed by sprinkling of salt in the corners of the house to purify it. Holy water that was blessed by a priest was also used to exorcise any evil spirits. I remember my grandmother telling me when you visit someone in their new home you bring a loaf of bread (not to go hungry), salt (to season their life), and last but not least sugar (to add sweetness to their family).

One person’s superstition is another person’s religion, way of life, or cultural identity. It is all about perspective. No matter how strange the omens or superstitions may seem to others who don’t practice or understand them, it can bring cultures and people together. Different cultures will pass down their traditions from generations to generations, and it just continues, and continues. That is just the way it is.

Today, I would love to share this simple but tasty authentic Italian meal called “Italian Sausage With Peppers & Onions.” All the flavors blend together and the onions as they caramelize give the peppers a sweet taste. A simple easy recipe that may just ward off Friday the 13th evil spells.

“Italian Sausage With Peppers & Onions”

2 large green peppers, cored, seeded & cut into 1 inch strips or chunks
2 large yellow peppers, cored, seeded & cut into 1 inch strips or chunks
1 large red pepper, cored, seeded & cut into 1 inch strips or chunks
2 large yellow onions, cut into 1 inch wedges
1/4 cup of olive oil or as needed
2 tablespoons of Oregano
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 to 2 lbs of Italian style pork sausage
(the amount of sausage depends on how many people that are eating)

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spread the vegetables in a shallow roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper and oregano. Make sure vegetables are in a single layer so they will all cook and brown evenly. Now pierce or stick each link of sausage two or three times with a fork, so they will cook through. Place sausage in between the peppers and onions. Bake till sausage and vegetables are cooked and browned. Bake uncovered about 45 minutes depending upon your oven. Your vegetables should be still firm, and no traces of pink should remain in the sausage. Serve hot, with a crusty Italian bread or a tossed salad.

****Just a quick note, to please come back on Sunday. It is Father’s Day and I have a special post about my father. He used to sing with the “Boy’s Chorus of the Metropolitan Opera”and my story is in reference to his years there. Don’t miss it, you will be amazed…. Thank you…

Till Next Time………………………………....................

Copyright ©  2014  “Family Plus Food Equals Love” All Rights Reserved


  1. Oh I completely forgot about Friday the 13th! Better watch out then!
    I love these sausages. I usually buy them only in Italy, so tasty and great on a barbecue too.
    Have a nice weekend Dottie!

    1. Dear Alida, I love Friday the 13th, as it is my lucky number, so that is why I never forget about the day. My grandmother, used to always carry a key chain with her and it had the number 13 on it, which was lucky for her as well. When she passed I have the key chain now and it goes everywhere with me. A reminder of my Nanni.
      What can you say about sausages, except they are fabulous! Add the peppers and onions and you have a feast! Yes, you can do it on the BBQ, another layer of flavors. Enjoy your weekend, Thanks for your visit. Dottie :)

  2. "Knock on Wood" was a normal thing to do in our house when we were grateful for something, anything, lol...I am familiar with many of these superstitions especially the spoon or fork falling on the floor. My mother use to say, Company's coming whenever either fell on the floor. I must admit, I do the same, lol...

    I love sausage and peppers. Not only do they always remind me of the Italian feast, they taste oh so good too. I prefer mine with no sauce but I know many people who "throw" in a can of sauce while it's roasting. Thank you so much for sharing, Dottie, have a safe Friday the 13th!

    1. Hi dear Louise,
      I agree and admit as well, I still do the knock on wood thing all the time. Isn't it funny that we grew up with these superstitions, and still do them as of today.
      I am so glad that you stopped by and yes, who doesn't love sausages and peppers. Also reminds me of feasts, BBQs, family get-togethers, and even picnics. We have never put tomato sauce on ours, unless we were making meat sauce. I am with you about the no sauce. Enjoy your weekend....You as well have a safe and fun Friday 13th....
      Again thanks for visiting, Blessings, Dottie :)

  3. I didn't even realize it was Friday the 13th until I came by, Dottie! Haha..what a week it's been. I'm thankful for Friday though so I'm not bothered by it. I am familiar with all the Italian superstitions from my mom. I believe in some of it, but not all of it....I was never a superstitious person...I think a cross around the neck is all you need. Some of it is fun though...and its hard to break tradition. Sometimes, we wear the red bow ;)

    Nothing beats sausage and peppers. I sandwich it between Italian bread and cheese. It's heavenly.


    1. Hi Tammy,
      So good to hear from you...thanks for visiting...I can imagine I also had one of those weeks, but you are good that Friday 13th doesn't bother you. I love the cross around your neck, at least it will keep away evils and vampires...Ha ha. It is hard to break tradition, but we are creatures of habit.
      Yes, there is nothing like a good sausage and pepper sandwich on a crusty roll, dripping and messy. Plus I love cheese with it as well. More gooey and delicious. Thanks again...
      You have a blessed weekend, Dottie :)

  4. Hi Dottie , what a great post for Friday 13th , I had to mile about the superstitions , born and raised here in Louisiana , I know exactly what you mean about people and superstition . In South Louisiana (on the Gulf) they call it voodoo ;-D . All the superstition you mentioned and more my husband's aunt says and she is from the old country .

    Love the sausage and onion , I am lucky , there is a small family plant run by Italians that's call Little Italy and you gets hungry just by smelling them smoked . Once I saw how they fill , roll and put them on racks to cook .
    Thanks for sharing and have a blessed weekend . :)

    1. Dearest Nee,
      Thanks for your visit and I'm so glad that you enjoyed this fun post. Yes, I can imagine about living in South Louisiana, and I have heard it called Voodoo. Yes, there were so many more, but I had to choose what the most popular were. My grandmother's would tell me stories that I couldn't even write down..Some of them are really outrageous.
      You are correct, Nee nothing like a roll filled with sausage, peppers and onions. I love the flavors and the messier the better, It makes you think of family, parties, feasts, and just plan fabulous food. You are lucky to be near those luscious aromas.
      I hope that you enjoy your weekend, and blessings Dottie :)

  5. Dear Dottie, I remember my mom saying to wear a red bow.
    I remember the fork and the spoon too; or she would say, "company".
    These are all good memories.
    A wonderful recipe too. I love sausage and peppers with some good bread.
    Blessings dear. Catherine xo

    1. Hi Catherine, This was a fun post to write...I love to hear about all of these superstitions. Yes, the spoon and fork meant company, and I can't forget if you put your clothing on inside out by mistake you will get a surprise. I don't know if you know about that one? But it is funny how the older relatives really took these to heart. Glad that you enjoyed the recipe, there is nothing like sausage, peppers, onions, and good bread to make a fabulous dinner, or lunch. Thanks for your visit, enjoy your weekend and the great weather....Dottie :)