The Acadians centered in south Louisiana, or more commonly known as Cajuns have a term for sauted onions, celery and green pepper,…The Holy Trinity. It is the aromatic foundation of such famous Cajun dishes as gumbo, jambalaya and etouffee.

In Italian cuisine The Holy Trinity is onions, carrots and celery sauteed in olive oil and it is the base of many soups and casseroles. This holy trinity is called a sofrito and works very well in this hearty stew to start building the layers of flavor we’re looking for.

This is a recipe I re-created for a recipe contest I entered. I really enjoy one-pot meals. If you put this in the oven on Sunday afternoon everyone in the family can eat according to their schedules.

Remember..homemade just tastes better.

Smokey Sausage and Bean Casserole


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 12 small smokey pork sausages or breakfast sausages
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 carrot diced
  • 1 celery rib diced
  • 1 15 oz. canned chopped Italian plum tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 15 oz. can cannellini beans drained
  • toasted sourdough bread for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat olive oil in an oven proof Dutch oven, add sausages and cook until evenly browned, remove and set aside. To Dutch oven add onion, garlic, carrot and celery and saute for 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients, sausages and 2 cups of water to Dutch oven. Bring to a boil and put on middle rack in preheated oven and bake for 45-60 minutes, until thickened. Ladle generous portions onto toasted sourdough slices. To finish give a quick drizzle of olive oil and a few small leaves of fresh thyme.

Buon Apetito.

The Author:

James Hacker is a restaurateur, caterer and self proclaimed “foodie.” He has owned two well respected and well reviewed restaurants, The White Bear Cafe, in Berkeley, CA. and DELISH Deli & Catering in Deephaven, MN. For more great recipes, reviews, tips, great links and road trip reports visit:

Photo Credit:  Apolonia

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