Friday, November 20, 2015

Thanksgiving Italian Style With “Rice, Sausage & Onion Stuffing” & “Cinnamon Apple Rings” For Dessert

As Thanksgiving is less than one week away, I wanted to wish for you, my readers a very grateful and Happy Thanksgiving holiday. I hope that your day is filled with family, friends, and all the fixings for your holiday dinner. I, among everyone else, have many things to be thankful for, especially to you my readers from coast to coast and across the seas. May your day be filled with past blessings and prayers for a bright future! Thanks for coming back and enjoying my stories and my favorite family Italian recipes.

Italians love any holiday that brings family, friends, and food together. Every Italian family has traditions and recipes that are unique and make their Thanksgiving special. Italian Americans will often add to their traditional Thanksgiving dinner with an antipasto, pasta or soup course, and then after the turkey and the usual trimmings come the Italian desserts. The desserts are not only your typical pumpkin and apple pie, but sweets, and pastries that Italians have been baking for years. I have two recipes this week to share with you my readers. The first one is called “Rice, Sausage, & Onion Stuffing.” The second is a scrumptious dessert called, “Cinnamon Apple Rings.

Sofia Puzelli

The first recipe is one that my mom has cooked for Thanksgiving every year. It is so delicious that we ask her to cook this dish even if it is not a holiday. This recipe has been passed down from my great-grandmother Sofia Puzelli. My family loves this stuffing as it is made in a baking dish and not stuffed inside the turkey. The flavor is sweet from the onions and the sausage has that savory taste with the added grated cheese. It is a perfect marriage to have along side of your turkey dinner.

Rice, Sausage & Onion Stuffing
1 1/2 lbs of sweet sausage bulk (out of casing)
2 cups of rice (uncooked) Uncle Ben's
3 large eggs
2 large onions (sliced thin)
3/4 cup of Pecorino Romano grated cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Sauté sausage in pan with a little oil. Before sausage is totally cooked add onions and finish cooking. While sausage is cooking cook rice. Drain rice and put in a large bowl. Next beat eggs in a small bowl. Then mix together cooked rice, raw beaten eggs, grated cheese, and cooked sausage with onions. Put in a baking dish. Bake in a 350°F for about 40-45 minutes until mixture sets. Yummy!


*******Special Note: I will be posting on Tuesday November 24th, for “Soupy Tuesday.” But will not be posting on the Friday after Thanksgiving. I am taking some time off and will be back on December 8th, for another fabulous “Soupy Tuesday.” 


As Christmas is approaching I will be posting what I call “Christmas Around The World” or “Old World Santa’s.” It is like The Twelve Days of Christmas, but only Christmas around the world. These posts will start on December 13th and I will be posting one a day till Christmas Eve. They will contain a story about the traditions of that Country, the Santa’s, and a Christmas recipe according to that country. I did these two years ago and my theme was “Christmas Music.” Everyone is always asking me if I am going to post my rendition of the twelve days, so this year I will be able to do it.. I look forward to these posts as I love Christmas as you my readers know, so this will be fun and I would like to get some recipes from other countries. So I hope to see you everyday from December 13th through Christmas Eve. As usual if you have any ideas of countries or recipes of that country please feel free to email me: ( and I will be more than happy to share your input.

So, now let’s get back to our Thanksgiving recipe for a delicious dessert!


The second recipe is called “Cinnamon Apple Rings.” What a light, fresh, and sweet dessert for after your Thanksgiving meal. A delightful accompaniment with a cup of tea, coffee, or an after dinner drink. A quick and delicious snack that will be a guaranteed hit in your home! What are you waiting for? Whip up a batch today!

Cinnamon Apple Rings

Total Time: 20 minutes
Yield: About 20 apple rings

4 large Granny Smith apples
1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 large egg, beaten
3/4 cup milk
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
Vegetable oil for frying

For the cinnamon-sugar topping:
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and cinnamon. In a small bowl, beat together the egg, milk, and vanilla. Slice the apples into 1/4 inch thick slices, and remove the center of each slice with a small biscuit cutter or apple corer. Heat 1/2 inch of oil in a large skillet until it reaches 350° F.  Mix the egg/milk/vanilla mixture into the flour mixture and whisk until a smooth batter has formed. Dip each apple ring into the batter, allowing any excess batter to drip off before adding to the oil. Fry apple rings, 2 or 3 at a time, until golden, about 1 minute per side. Remove rings from oil and drain on a paper towel lined plate for a moment before dipping apple ring into the cinnamon-sugar topping. Serve warm or at room temperature.

So, as we say in Italian, “Abbondanza!!” (Plentiful & Abundance)  “Happy Thanksgiving” to everyone…..    

Recipe Source: DIY

Till Next Time…………………………

Copyright  © 2015 “Family Plus Food Equals Love” All Rights Reserved


  1. So many good things here, Dottie! The stuffing is definitely not our version, but it sounds delicious and I'd love to try it. And the apple rings are great, that's new to me and sounds delicious. Sofia is wearing quite the outfit, it must've been very stylish in the day! Here's wishing you and yours Happy Thanksgiving! And have a good break. I'll be looking forward to Soupy Tuesday! Take care

    1. Hi Pam,
      Thanks for your comment. I agree, I love the traditional stuffing, but this is a great way to enjoy another type. It is more like a dressing, because it is made outside of the turkey. It is easy and it is delicious You have to try this sometime. You can even make this as a side dish for chicken, pork, etc. It is good anytime. Yes, my great grandmother Sofia is kinda like my muse. She was dressed like that because it was a big portrait of her, her husband, and two of her many children. I just cropped out the others, but I still have that photo. It was taken in the year of 1898...Thanks for the good wishes, you as well have a very Happy and Delicious Thanksgiving...I do need a little break especially at this time of the year...a lot going on so I need to go slow...Yep, keep watching those "Soupy Tuesdays" Have a blessed day dear friend...
      Dottie :)

  2. Dear Dottie, love your stuffing recipe made with pecorino! This is a good idea. I make stuffing for Christmas usually for my mother in law who is English and loves a traditional British Christmas dinner (we always spend Christmas in the UK). So this is a nice twist to the classic recipe.
    Love the addition of cinnamon to the apple rings, they look so yummy, I wish I could grab one now!
    I wish you a lovely Thanksgiving, have a rest and take it easy. Ciao!!

    1. Dear Alida,
      Thanks for your lovely comment...You know you can't have anything without cheese. My family loves Pecorino Romano cheese. I also love the traditional stuffing, my sister-in-law makes a great stuffing for the turkey. (We usually go to my brother's for Thanksgiving, and then Christmas we are here with my parents too) It is delicious, we make this every year, kinda like our tradition. Now these apple rings are fantastic and yes the cinnamon is such a great add on. Love cinnamon especially at this time of year.. It reminds me of home and family. This recipe was on the DIY website.. I have used it many times. Thanks again dear friend for your wishes. I wish you a very happy day as well.
      I will take it easy and get ready for my blog, "Christmas Around The World" Ciao! mio caro amico!
      Dottie :)

  3. Good evening Dottie ,
    Never had this stuffing , it sounds incredible delicious . I make two / three types of stuffing to give everyone a choice , this one will be a winner and so easy .
    Love the apple rings , they will go over well with all the family that's coming in .
    Yes my friend take it easy because we all are waiting for your "Christmas Around The World."
    Have a safe and warm weekend .
    Nee :)

    1. Good evening Nee,
      Thanks for such a lovely comment. It is very simple to make and it is one that you will love to prepare for every year. I can imagine how many types of stuffing you make for your family. The apple rings are so good..I have made them many times for my family and they love them. The kids love to sugar them. Yes, giving myself some extra time to get things in order for Christmas at home and then doing all that research for the "Christmas Around The World" takes a lot of time...I don't want to get too stressed out like last year..this year is better.. I know many of my friends and readers love when I do this for everyday, but as you know it takes a lot of work. But I love and enjoy doing it, so that makes it so much nicer. I promise I will take it as well dear friend have a fun and blessed weekend.
      Hugs x Dottie :)