Another amazing year of feeding kids at the Impact NW/KOIN6 Holiday Store!

Impact NW Holiday Store

This is the second year that the chefs at hautemealz.com have been privileged to prepare meals for the children and families coming in to the Impact NW Holiday Store.

3The Holiday Magic Store embodies the mission of Impact NW providing an opportunity for families to shop for free from a store filled with brand new items for their children, their household and themselves. Families that have shopped through the store have shared that this form of empowerment has had an immeasurable impact on their life – providing them with a sense of dignity and comfort in knowing that people within their own community truly care about them.

“Thank you, hautemealz.com, for serving three delicious meals to the shoppers and volunteers at our Impact NW Holiday Store! Your generosity and kindness never cease to amaze us!” – Mari Tamiyasu, Impact NW

A BIG thank you to our weekly meal plan subscribers, as a large portion of your subscription fees go to supporting and cooking for these types of outreach programs and events!

View the full slideshow here, on our Facebook page!

Merry Christmas, Everyone!

Chefs Perry, Terry, & Chris


Johnsonville’s Mild Italian Sausage Slices: Review and Recipe

Johnsonville’s Mild Italian Sausage SlicesThe fine folks at Johnsonville were kind enough to send me a complimentary package of their new frozen Mild Italian Sausage Slices for review, and I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised.

(I think they liked our Bratwurst Pretzel Sliders with Maple-Mustard Caramelized Onions!)

I assumed they would be good, but these are really delicious!

As well as my Potato Soup (recipe below), I think they would be a fantastic addition to pizza, Italian style sandwiches, and just about any egg dish, as well.

Bright with fennel, but not overpoweringly so, this product offers plenty of sausage flavor without being greasy or too salty. A quick and easy addition to your favorite recipes, these sausage slices pack a wallop of great flavors!

(…and my soup ain’t half bad, either…)

Italian Sausage Potato Soup

Italian Sausage Potato Soup
Serves 4

2 large russet potatoes
1/2 cup sliced carrots
1/2 cup sliced celery (include leaves)
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp. + 2 tsp butter
2 cups + 1/2 cup whole milk
salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups Johnsonville’s Mild Italian Sausage Slices, thawed
2 slices dark rye bread

MirepoixPeel, halve, and slice the potatoes. Place in a pot with with 2 cups milk or enough to cover, and 2 Tbsp. butter, bring to a simmer until potatoes just begin to soften, about 10 minutes.

Saute the onions, carrots, and celery (This is called a “mirepoix”) along with the sliced garlic. Use a slotted spoon to add the mirepoix to the pot with potatoes.

MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter!

We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday. Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids.



In the same pan as the mirepoix, saute the sausage slices until just beginning to brown. Remove from pan and set aside

Add 2 tsp. of butter to the pan over medium-low heat until melted. Add the flour and stir until smooth (this is called a “roux”). Over medium heat, cook until the mixture turns a light, golden sandy color, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the milk in a separate pan until just about to boil. Add the hot milk to the butter mixture a little at a time, whisking continuously until very smooth. Bring to a boil.

(Congratulations, you just made a bechamel sauce!)

Cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly, then remove from heat and whisk into the soup. Add the sausage slices and let simmer five minutes. Adjust for salt and pepper, and serve with dark rye toast points (optional).


-Chef Perry